On April 16, 2022, an Islamist mob stormed a Hanuman Jayanti procession in Delhi’s Jahangirpuri area. Hindu organisations accused illegal Bangladeshis and scrap workers in the Jahangirpuri area of being involved in the rioting, which included stone-pelting from a mosque in the C Block. Following this occurrence, the MCD launched an anti-encroachment campaign against unlawful construction in the area. However, the Supreme Court stopped the MCD’s operation shortly after it was initiated. The OpIndia team visited the locality on April 28, 2022 (Thursday) to analyse the present status in the area.
One-third scrap left in the area
A lot of junk and encroachment has been cleared, but one-third of the scrap is still lying around in the open in Jahangirpuri. In addition, the region is littered with debris and scrap that has been strewn here and there.
Scrap now shifted to G Block
According to information obtained from locals, the scrap has been taken from the C block and relocated to the G block of Jahangirpuri. The OpIndia team discovered a large amount of scrap lying on government land in the open in front of the Dhobighat area in the G block. In the G block, trucks and other small vehicles were constantly moving. This location is approximately one kilometre away from the scene of the violence.
Police and Paramilitary forces camping in the locality
After roughly 12 days, the situation had returned to normalcy to a large extent. Even after this, the police and paramilitary are still camped out in the area. There are barriers all along the route where the violence erupted in C Block. Police are also stationed near the Jamia Masjid. A sizable number of women were also visible in the security forces. The C block and nearby regions have been partitioned into sectors by the police. Locals are only permitted to move within the barriers. Extra strictness is being observed during the night.
Debris still lying in front of Masjid and bulldozed structures
The debris, which was left after the MCD initiated an anti-encroachment campaign approximately a week ago, was still visible on the side of the road. The destroyed wall in front of Jamia Masjid is still there. The exterior of the lawyer’s office, which is close to the mosque, was also observed laying in a damaged state, where the scrap bikes were stored before the incident. These are all the places shown during political tours by different parties.
With this, more than half of the stores selling veggies, milk, and other necessities were found to be open. The majority of the establishments on the street in C block, where the violence occurred, remained closed. The rest of the shops that had been bulldozed under the guise of encroachment were found to be shuttered. There was some market activity between 6 PM and 9 PM. Following that, the markets were closed.
Slums on an empty ground in front of the Masjid
Just across the street from the mosque, there is a patch of unused land. Even before the riots, there were slums in the area, which are still in the same state. It is stated that the majority of persons living in the slums in Jahangirpuri are scrap workers. Despite the anti-encroachment effort, those slums on C block’s unoccupied land remain in the same condition.