Jahangirpuri tells a familiar tale; Mosque targeted, Muslims provoked and trapped

New Delhi, April 19 (KMS): There seems to be no let-up in the saffron brigade’s aggression against Muslims in India. This is evident from the communal clashes that erupted in the Jahangirpuri area of New Delhi.

The violence followed the same pattern as has been seen during Ram Navami violence. A religious procession, Shoba Yatra, organized to mark Hanuman Jyanti, passed through the Muslim locality amidst provocative slogans raking up the ghosts of communal violence.

Reports have it that at least nine people, including eight policemen, were injured in the violence. Police have, so far, registered several cases and arrested 14 people, all Muslims, which has raised eyebrows over the fairness of the investigation.

According to eyewitness accounts, Hindu revellers targeted a mosque. They tried to barge into the religious place with intent to hoist saffron flags atop its minarets. This, locals said, led to an outbreak of clashes. The participants in the procession were heard shouting provocative slogans against Muslims like the one warning them to chant Ram Ram if they want to live in India.

They alleged stone pelting from the mosque when they were passing through the locality and had no option but to retaliate. But videos viral on social media tell a different story. Participants of the procession could be seen brandishing swords, guns and lathis in the visuals. According to Indian media, the particular video is from Jahangirpuri’s C-D Block market.

After the clashes, authorities beefed up security with police and paramilitary forces fanning out across the streets in the area to maintain law and order. Marches were also conducted in other parts of the city as the police appealed for peace.

One of those arrested is Aslam, accused of brandishing a gun and firing gunshots during the clashes. The police say he is 21-year-old, but his family claims he is all of 17. An age related document shows 2005 as his birth year.

Ansar is another Muslim youth whose name is doing the rounds as the main accused in the violence. But his wife and neighbours vouched for his innocence. His wife told the media that Ansar had gone out to resolve a dispute between the two sides.

“Ansar has been living here with his family for 12 years, and they’ve never indulged in any violence. They have always helped us,” Kamlesh Gupta, a neighbour of Ansar, told the media.

A complaint from a sub-inspector, which formed the basis for the FIR, also shows that stones were pelted from both sides, yet the police arrested only Muslims.