A demolition drive has been going on in Haryana to clear up forest land under Aravali. As per reports, there were over 10,000 unauthorized residential constructions including slums and several religious structures illegally erected into the ecologically fragile Aravali forest land near Lakarpur Khori village in Haryana by the encroachers. One such structure was Bilal Mosque in Khori village.
As reports of the demolition were published on news portals and social media platforms, Pakistan saw it as an opportunity to target India and the BJP government at the centre. Pakistan condemned the “unjust demolition” of the mosque that was illegally constructed on the forest land. Asim Iftikhar Ahmad, Foreign Office Spokesperson, said, “Pakistan strongly condemns the unjust demolition of ancient Bilal Mosque in BJP-ruled Haryana by Indian authorities in consort with pliant judiciary under BJP-RSS regime.”
The statement issued by Ahmad further read, “Hindutva-driven BJP-RSS combine’s perpetual targeting of Muslims and their places of worship is an indelible blot on the so-called ‘largest democracy'”. The statement further dragged the historic judgement by the Supreme Court of India in which they allowed Hindus to rebuild the iconic Bhavya Ram Mandir that was demolished by Babur hundreds of years ago. Pakistan tried to paint the decision as anti-Muslim as well. It further urged the international community, United Nations and OIC to hold India accountable for such “actions against Muslims” and other minorities.
Alleged columnist and Islamist sympathizer CJ Werleman shared a video of the demolition drive and wrote that the Indian government had demolished an ancient mosque in Haryana. Pakistani daily Dawn picked up the tweet and created a propaganda report to paint India as anti-Muslim.
Indian government demolished the ancient Bilal Mosque in Haryana. pic.twitter.com/tHbo3Qiau0— CJ Werleman (@cjwerleman) August 23, 2021
The mosque is not the only religious structure brought down
As per reports, the Bilal Mosque is not the only religious structure that has been demolished to clear the illegally encroached forest land. Clarion India reported that at least ten mosques, 25 temples, two churches and a Sikh Gurdwara had been demolished by the authorities along with several farmhouses and other residential buildings as per Supreme Court’s orders.
The demolition drive was started after Supreme Court refused to stay the demolition of 10,000 residential properties constructed illegally on sensitive forest land. The court refused to allow any structure to remain intact and ordered the Haryana government to ensure the forest land is cleared of encroachment. The court further added that no structure would be spared irrespective of its classification that resulted in the demolition of religious structures as well. Notices were also issued to the encroachers to remove the illegal constructions. On August 24, the Haryana administration told the Supreme Court that 150 acres of forest land had been cleared of all encroachments.
Pakistan has misplaced priorities
Pakistan is trying to poke its nose in the internal matters of India for a long time, and condemning the demolition of an illegally constructed mosque is part of such attempts. Interestingly, Pakistan is not bothered by the fact that the Taliban is knocking on its doors after taking over Afghanistan, and there are countless supporters of the Jihadist organization in Pakistan itself. Though the country follows Islamic laws, ‘Talibani farmaan’ like ban on music, compulsory burqa, ban on television, no co-ed schools etc are not applicable in Pakistan yet. However, if Pakistan continues to poke its nose in matters that do not concern its existence, soon it will face the consequences.