Communalism

Delhi Riots: Mosques and Huts Burned, Children Attacked, at Least 2 Dead in Mustafabad

At least two mosques in the northeasrt Delhi neighbourhood have been vandalised and attacked with stones, reportedly by a Hindutva mob. Elsewhere in the area, masked men shouting 'Jai Shri Ram' torched Muslim huts.

New Delhi: The Mustafabad area in north east Delhi also saw violence on Tuesday evening as a Hindutva mob attacked the anti-Citizenship Amendment Act protest site, injuring several people including children.

According to residents, a mob of around 50 men gathered in the area and began to pelt stones.

At least two mosques in the area have been vandalised and attacked with stones, by the same mob.

Residents told The Wire that men armed with rods and pistols gathered outside the mosques in the area and attacked them. At the time, several children were inside the mosque and were attacked. 

The locals rescued several children from the mosque and some have severe injuries. The Wire saw a 15-year-old boy with severe head and leg injuries being rescued from inside the mosque. He was unable to walk and claimed that he had been attacked by rods. 

Also read: Ground Report: In Riot City, Hindutva Mobs Rage With Impunity as Police Watch in Silence

According to locals, around 20 people have been injured in the violence at Mustafabad. Several people have received gunshot wounds. At least one person has died and was brought dead to a local clinic while two others were brought injured. The Delhi high court was told that a second person has also died in Mustafabad.

The Wire has visuals of the dead and the injured at the clinic, but is refraining from publishing them at this time.

In the area, several houses and shops have been set on fire and continue to be ablaze. 

AAP member Amit Mishra tweeted a video of violence from Mustafabad, which was later retweeted by the region’s AAP MLA Haji Yunus.

Yunus posted several tweets asking for help, both medical and in containing the escalating violence on the day.

Late into the evening of February 25, armed and masked men came and set fire to jhuggis (slum dwellings) and vehicles in a different part of Mustafabad, while Delhi police looked on. Near a group of burning homes, other residents of the slum – who identified themselves as Hindus from the Mahavat jaat – told the Wire that the burning  jhuggis belonged to Muslims who had fled the area the previous day. They said the fires were started by men shouting ‘Jai Shri Ram’, and others said the men were members of the Bajrang Dal.

“Keh rehe the tum bolte raho aur bachte raho – tum Jai Shri Ram nahi bologe tho mare jaoge,” (“They said, say this and save yourselves – if you don’t say Jai Shriu Ram you will be killed”) a resident said, in recorded footage.

Further down the road, on the northern side of the Eastern Yamuna Canal, a new fire was started by groups of masked and armed men.

The area is on the border of Delhi and Uttar Pradesh, and UP police officers of the nearby Loni Road police station, with multiple jeeps and carrying carbines, stood at barriers but said they were unable to engage the mobs a hundred metres away, in Delhi. The Loni Road policemen believed the new fire was a burning tempo vehicle.

At least two Delhi policemen were standing by, close to the new fire and the mob. The Wire spoke to the Delhi policemen who only said that journalists should leave and would not be protected.

In the clashes that have erupted in the national capital since Saturday, 13 people have died so far and 70 people have received gunshot wounds as violence spread on Tuesday. The number of total injured is 186 – 56 police personnel and 130 civilians.

The Union home ministry has ruled out calling in the Army to contain the situation. As many as 6,000 personnel of the paramilitary forces and the police have been deployed in the north east Delhi area. Curfew has been imposed in four areas.