7 July 2022
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Recent demolition drives carried out by Delhi civic bodies in Muslim-dominated areas were communally and politically motivated, several civil society organisations and citizens said on Wednesday.

“The use of bulldozers for these demolitions appears to be a willful act of collective punishment to a vulnerable population,” the organisation said. “They [demolitions] were carried out by state authorities on the basis of communal sentiments expressed by several political actors and echoed in various media quarters.”

The organisations and citizens wrote a letter expressing “deep distress and concern” to Delhi Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and the commissioners of the three municipal corporations in the National Capital. The letter was published by the blog Kafila.

The signatories included women’s rights activists Annie Raja, Malini Bhattacharya and Anjali Bharadwaj, Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist) member Kavita Krishnan and Dharmender Kumar of the Hawkers Joint Action Committee.

The demolitions were part of countrywide actions by the Bharatiya Janata Party “attacking Muslim lives, practices and livelihoods”, the signatories of the said.

The letter took note of South Delhi Mayor Mukesh Suryan’s statement on April 25 that the municipal corporation will carry out demolition drives in the areas of Shaheen Bagh, Okhla…

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Abdul Gh Lone