Lucknow: Continuing with its tough stand against the ‘conspirators’ of the riots in Uttar Pradesh, the Prayagraj Development Authority bulldozed the house of a Welfare Party of India (WPI) leader who was named for his alleged role in the violence witnessed on Friday.
ThePrint had reported on Saturday about how bulldozers had reached outside the house of Javed Mohammed, the WPI state general secretary, in Kareli area of Prayagraj district.
Uttar Pradesh chief minister’s media advisor Mritunjay Kumar had tweeted a picture of bulldozers in Kanpur on Saturday with a warning that “every Friday is followed by a Saturday”. Chief Minister Yogi had tweeted that there is no place in the civil society for the anarchic elements who try to spoil the atmosphere.
माहौल खराब करने की कोशिश करने वाले अराजक तत्वों के साथ पूरी कठोरता की जाएगी। ऐसे लोगों के लिए सभ्य समाज में कोई स्थान नहीं होना चाहिए।
एक भी निर्दोष को छेड़ा नहीं जाएगा और कोई भी दोषी छोड़ा नहीं जाएगा।
— Yogi Adityanath (@myogiadityanath) June 11, 2022
Three bulldozers started rolling on the property at 12:15 pm and the house was reduced to rubble by 5:30 pm amid allegations of intimidation and harassment levelled by Mohammed’s second daughter Afreen Fatima.
Uttar Pradesh Additional Director General (law and order) Prashant Kumar, meanwhile, said that bulldozers were being used for action by the Prayagraj Development Authority under the ambit of law and that heavy police force has been deployed there as violent incidents happened last Friday. “Thirteen injured cops are getting treatment. The situation is normal across the state. Social media is being monitored as well,” he told ANI. As many as 306 people were arrested from across the state in connection with the incidents of 10 June, he added.
Several cases had been filed in two police stations at Prayagraj after protests over the derogatory remarks against Prophet Mohammad made by suspended BJP spokesperson Nupur Sharma turned violent
The bulldozing of the house was preceded by serious allegations being levelled by Mohammed’s daughter Afreen Fatima who alleged that after detaining her father, the Prayagraj police detained her mother and sister without any warrant.
One of the well-known faces of the protests against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, Afreen is a former president of the students’ union of Women’s College, Aligarh Muslim University.
In a viral video statement purportedly issued on Saturday night, Afreen said the police arrived without a warrant to detain her father.
“My father was detained by the Allahabad Police. There was no warrant, no letter. There was nothing that they came with. They just came and asked my father to come with them to the police station; they have not disclosed where they have taken him,” she is heard saying on the video. “…at around 12:30 am at night (Saturday) police came at my house and detained my mother and younger sister. My younger sister is just 19 years old and my mother is a diabetic. Again, we do not know where they are, we do not why the police has taken them, what they are doing with them.”
‘Police tried to evict us from our house’
In the video, Afreen added that the police arrived at their house for a second time around 2:30 am on Saturday. “Police again gathered at our house and tried to detain myself and my sister-in-law, when we resisted and said that we will not be going with them, they tried to intimidate us, threaten us, harass us in every possible way,” she claimed, adding that several Muslim activists including her father were being either harassed or demolished.
She claimed that she had gathered that bulldozers and JCBs were present across the town in Allahabad.
What's the shameful moment for our country!!!! Criminals are ruling the government and students are hunting by the criminals….#StandWithAfreenFatima#AfreenFatima pic.twitter.com/uQckbohMIc
— Ghazi (@Ghazi_E_Islam) June 12, 2022
By Sunday afternoon, three bulldozers had already reached the house of Afreen and began demolishing the house at 12:15 pm.
‘House in the name of Mohammed’s wife’
Early on Sunday, a notice was found pasted outside the house by the Prayagraj Development Authority (PDA), which stated that a show-cause notice was issued to him on 10 May for unauthorised construction of ground and first floor. It also mentioned that the hearing of the matter was scheduled for 24 May.
“However, you (Mohammed) or your authorised advocate did not produce yourself on the mentioned date neither documents were produced by you. On May 25, order for demolition was passed which was served by pasting on the spot and you were expected to share information after demolishing the house by June 9 which was not done by you. Hence, you are informed to vacate the house by 11 am on June 12 so that the process of demolition can be carried out,” states the notice in possession with ThePrint.
Advocate K.K. Roy, who is representing the family, told ThePrint that the contents of the notice were ‘false’.
“No notice was issued to my client. Moreover, the house is in the name of Parveen Fatima, the wife of Javed Mohammed and the property was gifted to her by her father at the time of marriage. As per the Muslim Personal Law, there is no share of the woman’s husband on the house given to her in the manner till she is alive. The notice has been pasted only yesterday (Saturday),” he said. “Moreover, a property can be sealed and not demolished under the UP Urban Development and Planning Act, 1973, You can not simply demolish the property. You have to first seal it.”
Roy further alleged that Parveen Fatima and her daughter Sumaiya were illegally detained on the intervening night of Friday-Saturday and released around 9 am on Sunday.
Roy further said that they have submitted a letter petition in Allahabad High Court via an email stating that house bulldozed by district development authority was not of Javed Mohammed but belonged to his wife Parveen Fatima and it was demolished without following proper procedure. He said that they will the matter to Supreme Court if need be.
The article has been updated to correct the name of Javed Mohammed’s lawyer, advocate K.K. Roy.
(Edited by Tony Rai)
Also Read: ‘After every Friday, comes Saturday’: Day after clashes over Prophet row, bulldozers in 2 UP cities