Days after violence in Haldwani's Banbhoolpura over demolition of illegal madrasa and mosque, Uttarakhand Chief Minister Pushkar Singh Dhami has announced that a police station will be built on the land freed from encroachment.
"A police station will now be constructed on the land in Banbhoolpura from where illegal encroachment was removed," Dhami said.
Dhami further said that this will send a signal that those attempting to spoil the peaceful atmoshphere in Devbhoomi (Land of Gods) Uttarakhand will not be spared.
"It is a clear message from our government to troublemakers and rioters that no one who disturbs the peace of Devbhoomi will be spared, there is no place for such offenders in Uttarakhand," he added.
Dhami's statement comes days after a large team comprising 700 members from the police, administration, and municipal corporation was attacked after they went to demolish an illegal madrasa and prayer site constructed on government land in the Banbhoolpura area in Haldwani.
This action provoked a violent response from a mob of 10,000 people from the Muslim-dominated area, who resorted to stone-pelting.
Many policemen, journalists and civic body officials were injured in the stone pelting by the violent mob.
The police station in Banbhoolpura was set ablaze with petrol bombs.
The violence resulted in death of at five persons.
Following this turmoil, the entire area was turned into a fortress overnight, and efforts to identify the rioters began immediately.
The police filed cases against 5,000 persons and so far, at least thirty people have been arrested by the Uttarakhand police in connection with the Banbhoolpura violence.
Meanwhile, the Haldwani municipal corporation has served a recovery notice to Abdul Malik, the owner of the madrasa and mosque at Banbhoolpura demolished by the administration on 8 February, demanding Rs 2.44 crore in damages.
Malik has been asked to deposit the amount within three days.
He has been fined for damage to vehicles including tractors, goods carriers, etc., and equipment such as helmets and crowbars.
Kuldeep is Senior Editor (Newsroom) at Swarajya. He tweets at @kaydnegi.
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