Zakat India

With colony demolished, where will Parveen take her 3-yr-old Yusra tonight? Krishna homeless

okhla times

After sending her husband to office at about 8 AM today, Shahbat Parveen got down to daily work in her modest 250 gaz house in Shram Vihar, Abul Fazal Enclave part III. Until 9 AM everything was normal with her three-year-old daughter Yusra Rahman playing nearby.

The arrival of the police force didn’t alarm her and other residents. “We thought that they had come to demolish small huts located nearby.  For days men were talking about demolition. But after a meeting with RWA members we were told that houses will not be demolished. Only a few fences and minor encroachment will be cleared.

“We were not bothered until announcement was made requesting residents to come out from houses. It was then that I realized that something was wrong. Hyperventilating, I immediately informed my husband and other family members. They rushed to the spot but were not allowed to enter the colony. I was helpless. I saw my house bulldozed in front of me. Everybody was helpless in front of the presence of some 3,000 police men.”

Shahbat, who bought the land from a builder, told OKHLATIMES that she paid Rs 10,000 per gaz to buy the house. “The transaction was done on power of attorney three years ago. My builder told me that the land was clean and he had bought it from farmers. Also, he had assured us that nothing wrong would happen. Now all my saving is lost. I was not even given time to remove my belongings. Everything has been gutted in the debris,” said Shahbat, who is from Bihar.

At about 5 PM, she sat devastated on a folding cot that she could only save with her small daughter Yusra and other men relatives pondering upon where to go for shelter. A few other items lay on the ground.

Mosque, temple not demolished
Shahbat is not alone. Most of the residents have the same heart-rending story to narrate. Many don’t know where to spend the night. A mosque and temple that were not demolished could most probably be their shelter this night. But with the onset of winter, finding blankets to keep themselves and their children warm would be arduous task.

Kewal Krishna Mehra, who lives a few meters from Shahbat house, is lost for words.

With tears in his eyes, he said: “We got no notice. A few days ago we met with the ADM and he told us no houses will be demolished. We were told that houses where people lived will not be touched. But this morning houses were demolished.”

Shattered, he said: “I had spent Rs 10 lakh on the house and all is gone.”

Another resident Saghir Ahmad said: “The land had no litigation. Builders had told us that the area was fine and would never be demolished. Now we plan to take legal action. The colony is legal.”

But authorities continue with their stand that the colony is illegal. “The area was illegal and hence demolished. Very soon residents will be asked to move out. Once that is done the area will be handed over to agency and fence will be erected to stop further encroachment,” said a police official, who didn’t want to be named.

Jamia Nagar station SHO Pankaj Singh said: “The demolition was unleashed on order from ADM revenue.”

MLA Khan on demolition
All told, Okhla MLA Asif Md Khan in not convinced with officials’ argument. “How can a colony be demolished when it has got a NOC?”

Addressing reporters at his Kalindi Kunj office, he said: “I am against demolition. The colony has already got NOC then how come it was demolished. Also, the City government had announced a few months ago that residential colonies will not be demolished.  And now the demolition takes place.”

In the morning when police sealed the area, some residents rushed to MLA Khan for help. After taking stock of the situation he immediately rushed with the delegation to chief minister Sheila Dikshit.

“The CM responded to our request to stop the demolition. After talking to some senior officials she assured us that demolition would be stopped. After that she left to attend a meeting. When the demolition didn’t stop even after the call, we met her again. And this time she lost her cool and said nothing could be done.”

And thus the campaign of saving the colony from demolition was lost. After accomplishing the demolition operation, the police force left the area for residents to trawl through the rubble.

CAPTION: Shahbat Parveen with her daughter and other relatives outside demolished house in Shram Vihar (OT photo)

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Liaqat Ali
Posted on 12.4.2012 at 1:29:11
Aur akhir kar garib haar gaya,

Mehnaz Najmi
Posted on 12.4.2012 at 1:32:26
Okhla is mostly inhabited by migrants who are not much aware about the legal issues or land disputes. they toil and dream of having their own space in Delhi. Builders in nexus with police guile innocent and sell pieces of land and make shift houses to these people..who eventually suffer...

Nithya Ravi via Facebook
Posted on 12.4.2012 at 16:32:4
In the news story, i read that all houses were demolished but a temple and a mosque were untouched as if God is the one who will die out there in the cold. Strange are the ways of humankind, we care less about fellow humans.

Khalid Jaleel via Facebook
Posted on 12.4.2012 at 16:32:53
Can you give an estimate of how many people have been affected by this demolition drive? How many houses were there in this colony that got destroyed?

Sajid Khan via Facebook
Posted on 12.4.2012 at 16:33:36
bhai pehle kahe illegal property pr rehte ho.....

Shaikh Jilani via Facebook
Posted on 12.4.2012 at 16:34:25
Sajid bhai property illegal hai theek bat par pehle yahan tameer karne hi kyun di thi govt. ne

Jamal Ahmad via Facebook
Posted on 12.4.2012 at 16:35:10
sir phir ye demolished q hui

Shahab Ahmed via Facebook
Posted on 12.5.2012 at 14:18:30


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