ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Violence in Trilokpuri

Hindutva Priming for Delhi Elections

The recent violence in Trilokpuri and communal incidents in some other areas of Delhi suggest that these have been instigated with an eye on the coming elections in the city state. The target seems to be to communalise important sections of Delhi's dalit population and mobilise them politically with Hindutva. Worryingly, there seem to be little counter-mobilisations and initiatives from political parties, which claim to oppose communalism and also profess to represent the poor and the oppressed.

On Diwali night, Thursday, 23 October 2014 a minor brawl between groups of young Hindus and Muslims in the Trilokpuri locality in Delhi escalated into a full-fledged communal conflagration by the next afternoon. The violence continued till late Saturday evening.

There is no official version of what caused the initial confrontation except for the fact that it began at the site of a makeshift Hindu shrine called the Mata-Ki-Chowki. The locals and the police confirm that the Mata-Ki-Chowki came up sometime in late September at a spot where there was earlier a garbage dump. The violence took the form of heavy stone-pelting between communities, some instances of gunfire and the burning down of some vehicles. A clothes showroom called “A2Z” owned by a Muslim shopkeeper was completely burnt down. It took the administration and the police almost four days to quell the violence. The Delhi Police, the Rapid Action Force and the Central Reserve Police Force were deployed, Section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure was instituted, and curfews were imposed in several blocks of Trilokpuri. By then, fearing more violence, a large number of families had migrated to safer places in the city and many have returned to their villages in western Uttar Pradesh (UP), in the districts of Meerut, Badaun and Bulandshahar.

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