SC issues notice to UP govt on demolition of properties

New Delhi: Directing the Uttar Pradesh government to file a detailed affidavit within three days on the plea by Jamiat Ulama-i-Hind against the recent demolitions in the state, the Supreme Court on June 16 observed that demolitions have to be in accordance with the due process of law.

Issuing notice to the state, the apex court bench of Justices A S Bopanna and Vikram Nath orally remarked that the demolitions can’t be a retaliatory measure. “Everything should look fair, we expect the authorities to act only in accordance with the law. Ensure safety so that nothing untoward happens,” noted the top court.

During the course of the hearing, Advocate Chander Uday Singh, who appeared for the petitioner, strongly argued that one community was targeted and the process of demolition was ‘appalling’.

In the plea, moved against the backdrop of the ongoing row over comments on the Prophet and subsequent demolition drives, the Jamiat Ulama sought directions to initiate action against those officials who were responsible for the houses allegedly demolished in violation of the rule of law and the municipal laws enacted by the state.

The plea stated that the present situation is more alarming as the Supreme Court had already ordered a stay of demolitions that were being carried out as a punitive measure in northwest Delhi in similar circumstances.

Incidents of violence and slogan-shouting were reported from Uttar Pradesh’s Prayagraj and Saharanpur on June 10 after prayers when people began protesting against former BJP spokespersons’ remarks on the Prophet.

Bulldozers, now a symbol of Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath’s crackdown on anti-social elements, reached the residence of Mohammad Javed (Javed Pump), who has been identified as the main conspirator behind the violence that erupted in the city on June 10.

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