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200 Hindu migrant families from Pakistan in Delhi’s Adarsh Nagar wait to get access to electricity: Read why they are being denied the same

For years, the lives of 800 Pakistani Hindu immigrants residing in the Adarsh Nagar neighbourhood of North Delhi have been dismal. These families have been forced to live in the dark for many years. The reason is that these 200 families living in the slums do not have access to electricity.

The Centre has Friday, opposed a petition seeking electricity connections for 200 Hindu migrant families from Pakistan, who are currently residing in North Delhi’s Adarsh Nagar. The central government told the Delhi HC that the camp built by these refugees at Delhi Jal Board Maidan is an illegal encroachment on defence land.

The court last month had issued a notice to the Delhi government and Centre on the petition seeking relief for the families who have migrated from Pakistan.

For years, the lives of 800 Pakistani Hindu immigrants residing in the Adarsh Nagar neighbourhood of North Delhi have been dismal. These families have been forced to live in the dark for many years. The reason is that these 200 families living in the slums do not have access to electricity.

For years, they had been living in deplorable conditions in Pakistan, with the sole aim of gaining Indian citizenship one day. They have been placing all of their hopes on the Modi administration. They don’t even want to return to Pakistan because life there is so much more difficult for them. In such a situation, one such Hindu migrant named Hariom filed a petition in the Delhi High Court seeking electricity connections for the 200 Pakistani Hindu migrant families currently residing in North Delhi’s Adarsh Nagar.

‘Migrants have illegally encroached on defence land”, Centre while opposing electricity connections to Pakistan Hindu migrant families living in Adarsh Nagar

The central government has, however, during the hearing today, opposed the petition seeking electricity connections.

These refugees, shackled by government laws, have been hoping for a bright Diwali since last month, however, their dreams shattered as the central govt in its reply to the Delhi HC stated that these migrants have illegally encroached on defence land, hence they could not be provided with electricity.

The Centre told the court that the 70.253-acre plot of land was transferred to the Defence Research and Development Organisation in August 2018 and that it has been following up with the district administration and police on the elimination of “unauthorised occupation/encroachment” on defence territory. According to the Centre, the Ministry of Defence has also taken up the matter of disconnecting the “unauthorised inhabitants'” electricity and water supply with the Delhi Jal Board and North Delhi Power Limited.

The petitioner, meanwhile, claimed that the migrants had also approached Tata Power Delhi Distribution Limited (TPDDL), the concerned power distribution company. The petitioner further stated that despite the fact that the migrants showed their Visas/Aadhar Cards to TPDDL, their application was denied on the grounds that while the Aadhar card can be used as proof of identity, it cannot be used as proof of occupancy.

The Delhi High Court had, last month, listed the matter for further hearing on October 22, 2021. Today also there appeared to be no definite decision coming out of the hearing. The Central government’s response has dashed the hopes of these migrants who hoped to get Indian citizenship under the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA).

Similar situation prevailing in Majnu Ka Tila and Signature Bridge in North Delhi

However, the Hindu immigrants residing in the Adarsh Nagar are not the only ones suffering. Even in the camp near Majnu Ka Tila and Signature Bridge in North Delhi, where Hindu refugees from Pakistan live, the lives of these Hindu refugees have come to a stand still due to lack of electricity and proper toilet facilities.

“We’ve been trying for electricity for the last seven years,” Dharamveer, the head of Majnu Ka Tila Camp, told OpIndia. “Snakes and scorpions keep pouring out every day.” What should we do if life is in danger here and there (Pakistan)? If we receive electricity, we’ll work hard to pay the bill.

Let us remind you that Majnu Ka Tila Camp, on the banks of the Yamuna, is also on Central Government territory and that these refugees have been waiting for rehabilitation for the past seven years.

Hari Om, a petitioner who works for the welfare of minority refugees’ in India from Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Afghanistan, informed the media about the Adarsh Nagar camp that the migrants are from Pakistan, predominantly from Sindh.

These immigrants came to India from Pakistan as a result of religious persecution by Pakistan’s majority Muslims. They hope that emigrating to India will provide a bright and safe future for their children, yet without electricity in the slum, their current existence is devastated.

According to reports in the media, the petition submitted by advocates Samiksha Mittal, Akash Bajpai, and Ayush Saxena stated that during the pandemic, when all schools have switched to online mode, the children of these Hindu migrants are suffering due to lack power in the slums.

The petition filed by Hariom further added that the majority of the migrants have long-term visas and Aadhaar cards. The power company has, however, argued that while Aadhaar can be used as confirmation of identity, it cannot be used as proof of occupation of the premises.

According to the petition filed last month, the electrical company has refused to grant them connections due to a lack of legitimate ownership proof of the applied address.

The petitioner had requested that the court order his clients to offer electricity connections based on the Aadhaar card and visa.

Ayodhra Ram Mandir special coverage by OpIndia

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