India: ‘Ruse For Ethnic Cleansing?’ Punjab And Haryana HC Asks, Halts Demolitions In Haryana’s Nuh


New Age Islam News Bureau

08 August 20123

Vehicles torched by the mob are being collected at the bus stand in Nuh. Photo: Atul Ashok Howale

The Punjab and Haryana high court stopped the demolition drive in Haryana’s Nuh after communal clashes broke out in the area last week, NDTV reported. The court, crucially, asked if the drive was an “exercise of ethnic cleansing” by the state.

“Apparently, without any demolition orders and notices, the law-and-order problem is being used as a ruse to bring down buildings without following the procedure established by law,” Hindustan Times quoted the bench of Justices Gurmeet Singh Sandhawalia and Harpreet Kaur Jeewan as having said.

Nuh’s deputy commissioner Dhirendra Khadgata asked officials to halt the demolitions following the high court order. The court had taken suo motu cognizance of the matter a week after communal violence in Haryana claimed six lives, injured many and led to a huge loss of property in Nuh and Gurugram, the report said.

According to Hindustan Times, more than 750 buildings were razed in four days. Many of those whose homes were razed claimed that they were not served a prior notice.

The local administration was accused of targeting Muslims by politicians. However, the administration said they were taking action against “illegal constructions” and encroachment and no individual was being targeted.

“Demolition drive against illegal construction is underway and it will continue. Action is not being taken to target anyone. Our motive is to establish peace,” Khadgata was quoted by NDTV as saying.

Hyderabad MP and chief of All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) Asaduddin Owaisi criticised the Haryana government saying for the move.”Confidence Building means buildings, homes and medical shops and shanties of one community [Muslims] should be Demolished without following due process to give collective punishment. The @mlkhattar government has usurped the rights of Courts of Law Confidence is being given to people who are ideologically closer to BJP/Sangh,” Owaisi had said in a tweet.

The district administration also drew criticism after they stopped a four-member delegation from Communist Party of India (Marxist) from entering Nuh. CPI(M) MP Binoy Viswam said was quoted by NDTV as saying, “This is the plight of the country today. The reality of the day, the Police are not allowing even us. That means that under this rule, even the freedom of movement is prohibited. Hooligans, goons and fascists can move freely.”

The situation in Nuh has remained tense since the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) rally last week led to violence in the area which later spread to Gurugram. Internet suspension is still in place in Nuh along with the presence of paramilitary forces on ground, NDTV reported.


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