Bulldozer Drive Again In South Delhi Areas, Action Paused In Seelampur

Delhi: Police stop those protesting against an anti-encroachment drive.

New Delhi:

Civic authorities on Wednesday carried out an anti-encroachment drive in Najafgarh, Dwarka, Lodhi Colony and several other areas in south Delhi. Bulldozers continued to roll in the city to carry out the action, even as municipal staff and police personnel on the job had to face stiff opposition from local people at some places.

Meanwhile, East Delhi Municipal Corporation (EDMC)’s planned drive in Seelampur couldn’t start on Wednesday as police force couldn’t be mobilised, the area’s mayor Shyam Sunder Aggarwal said.

The fresh action comes a day after the South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC) had carried out a drive to remove illegal temporary structures and demolish a few brick walls in New Friends Colony. North Delhi Municipal Corporation had also carried out an anti-encroachment drive in Mangolpuri area.

On Wednesday, civic authorities carried out a round of planned anti-encroachment drive in Najafgarh and West Zones of the SDMC, removing temporary structures put up illegally in various locations, including Dwarka, Chaukhandi and surrounding areas.

Videos of the action and protests put up by a section of local residents were being circulated on social media. In one instance, a man in Janakpuri area put up a stiff opposition and said that “notice should have been given to us” as seen in a video.

“They (anti-encroachment team) would have to go over our dead bodies,” he said, as a group of men and a few police personnel stood next to him.

Chairperson of SDMC’s West Zone, Shveta Saini said that an anti-encroachment drive was also being conducted in Janakpuri and Chaukhandi near Tilak Nagar. She said some of the locals protested in Janakpuri against the drive.

“The anti-encroachment drive was conducted despite the protest. We have removed only illegal temporary structures and kiosks. It is our duty to remove encroachment and we will continue our crackdown on violators,” Ms Saini told PTI.

Meanwhile, various left-wing organisations took out a citizens’ march to the Delhi Lieutenant Governor residence to protest against the anti-encroachment drives being carried out by BJP-led municipal corporations in the city.

The march started from Kashmere Gate and was proceeding towards Delhi Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal’s residence when it was stopped by the police.

As per the plan, action was being carried out in all four zones of the corporation, officials said.

In Najafgarh Zone, action was taken in the stretch from Aakash Hospital to Madhu Vihar Bus Terminal and other surrounding areas, in Ward No. 51S, while in the West Zone, it was being done in Chaukhandi and surrounding areas in Ward No. 6S, as per information shared by a senior civic official.

Police personnel have reached areas in the South Zone too, while action in Central Zone has also begun, the official said.

Central Zone areas, where action has been initiated, include Meher Chand Market, Lodhi Colony, places near Sai Baba Mandir and JLN Metro Station and surrounding areas in ward no. 58S, officials said.

In South Zone, the action was started in areas near Arjan Garh Metro Station, Aya Nagar Village Road, Ghitorni Village and surrounding areas in ward no. 73S.

Demolition action is likely in South Zone, West Zone and Najafgarh Zone, officials said.

Meanwhile, a senior official said that during SDMC’s anti-encroachment drive in New Friends Colony on Tuesday “a tree had got uprooted unintentionally”.

Information in this regard was given to the deputy conservator of forests via a letter dated May 10 wherein the SDMC has “assured the forest department to undertake ‘compensatory afforestation of 10 number of trees’ in lieu of the uprooted tree or take measures as directed by the forest department,” the civic body said.

According to SDMC officials, a road stretch measuring two kilometers was freed from encroachment during the drive at New Friends Colony on Tuesday. SDMC had to return without executing a similar action in Shaheen Bagh on Monday following protests by locals and political leaders.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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