Clash over parking turns communal in central Delhi; 3 cases filed

Hauz Qazi Chowk

New Delhi, July 1 (IANS) A minor scuffle over parking of a scooty took a communal turn as violent clashes broke out late on Sunday night in Central Delhi’s Hauz Qazi area, police said on Monday.

The situation in the area remained tense as minor clashes continued even on Monday afternoon. A photographer of a Hindi daily was injured in the violence.

Mobile footage went viral on social media which showed a temple being vandalised, aggravating the situation. Delhi Police and Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel have been deployed to ensure peace in the area.

Senior police officials stated that three separate cases have been registered.

Late on Sunday night, two people belonging to different religious communities got into a fight after one of them insisted on parking his scooty outside an eatery near a temple which was opposed by the other.

Soon the argument turned communal with both sides hurling abuses and assaulting each other.

Police officials have registered one case based on the statement of the person who had come to park his bike, the other case based on the statement of the person who did not let the other man park his bike and a third case against unknown persons for rioting and damaging public property.

Mandeep Randhawa, Deputy Commissioner of Police, (Central) said “After some altercation and scuffle over a parking issue in Hauz Qazi, tension arose between two groups of people from different communities. We have taken legal action and all efforts are being made to pacify feelings and bring about amity. People are requested to help in restoring normalcy.”

Some locals claimed that the incident occurred due to the vandalisation of the temple wall.

One of the locals stated that the incident took place at around 10 p.m., when a man identified as Aas Mohammad parked his scooty next to an eatery run by Sanjeev Gupta.

When Gupta objected and asked Mohammad to remove the vehicle, Mohammad allegedly went to a nearby street and called some people who started assaulting Gupta.

Some others stated that Gupta, along with others, thrashed Mohammad and even threatened to set his vehicle on fire.

According to a complainant named Saqib, he along with his family informed the police about the scuffle.

“Both of them were taken to the police station while during that time some unidentified people gathered outside the temple and vandalised it resulting in tension in the area,” said Saqib.

Nikhil Sharma, a temple worker, claimed that a group of people came to the temple and vandalised it and fled.

Police are probing the matter further.

(Advitya Bahl can be contacted at [email protected])

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