In the wake of recent communal violence in the Nuh district of Haryana, authorities have embarked on an effort to address the situation. A demolition drive, since Monday, has been underway to dismantle illegal constructions spanning approximately 2.6 acres of land surrounding Nalhar Medical College. The drive, using bulldozers, aims to remove unauthorized structures and encroachments.
Local officials have emphasized that these structures were built without proper authorization and notices had been issued to their owners prior to the demolition. Some of these illegal constructions were connected to individuals who were also implicated in the violence that erupted during the Braj Mandal religious yatra. Sub Divisional Magistrate Ashwani Kumar confirmed that the demolition efforts would persist.
The demolition drive began at Adbar Chowk and is slated to extend all the way to Tiranga Chowk, as stated by a police official. As a measure to allow normalcy to return, District Magistrate Dhirender Khadgata of Nuh announced a partial relaxation of the curfew. People are now permitted to go out and purchase essential items between noon and 3 pm.
Responding to the aftermath of the violence, the BJP-led State government took action against the illegal encroachments on August 3, 2023. In Tauru, Nuh, a crackdown on 200 rioters led to the bulldozing of 250 houses belonging to illegal immigrants. These encroachments had sprung up on Haryana Shehri Vikas Pradhikaran (HSVP) land over the past four years and were largely inhabited by illegal immigrants from Bangladesh.
The Haryana Police have also arrested multiple Rohingya refugees in connection with the recent communal violence in the Nuh district. Nuh Superintendent of Police, Narender Bijarniya, disclosed that some Rohingya refugees had unlawfully occupied HSVP land, which prompted the demolition drive. Additionally, a number of them were identified as being involved in the violence that occurred on July 31.
Sabber Kyaw Min, the founder and director of the Rohingya Human Rights Initiative, a community-focused NGO, expressed concern over the sudden demolition and the treatment of refugees. Many refugees in the camps work as rickshaw pullers, ragpickers, and vegetable sellers. While the NGO is willing to assist the police in cases of illegal activities, Min conveyed that these raids have created an atmosphere of fear and insecurity among the refugee community.
The situation at the refugee camps is reportedly challenging, with residents feeling unjustly targeted and treated as criminals. The unexpected demolition, accompanied by a strong police presence, has led to displacement and unease. Min emphasized the need for fair treatment and highlighted the refugees’ efforts to make a living amidst difficult circumstances.