Skip to main content
Sabrang
Sabrang
Communalism Violence

Delhi violence: What happened in Khureji Khas?

Fact-finding report by team of lawyers makes serious allegations against the police based on eyewitness accounts.

Sabrangindia 07 Mar 2020

Delhi ViolenceImage Courtesy: indiatvnews.com

The Khureji Khas neighbourhood in North East Delhi has been in the eye of the storm of communal violence raging through the area. In fact, Khureji Khas was in the news along with Chand Bagh and Bhajanpura as reports of some of the worst kind of mob violence came from these neighbourhoods. Intelligence Bureau (IB) employee Ankit Sharma was allegedly killed by mobs in this area. Moreover, petrol bombs, large stones and acid pouches were recovered from the roof of a property owned by now suspended AAP MLA Tahir Hussain from the same region.

On February 25, police conducted a flag march in the area to control the violence. After the flag march on February 25 that was led by Special Commissioners of Police Satish Golcha and Praveer Ranjan, Golcha (Special Commissioner – Law&Order – Northern Range) had told India Today, “We are taking appropriate actions. The required force is being used. Tear gas and mild lathicharge has been used to control the crowd. We will detain the miscreants and appropriate action will be taken against them.”

On February 26, the protesters at the site were cleared away. It is around this time that a series of serious allegations have been made against the police; from brutally physically assaulting people, to breaking CCTVs and even manhandling women! These instances have been documented by several reputed publications such as Scroll in this report and The Wire in this report. Though there are several videos of these excesses being committed by the police, the Delhi Police are yet to issue an official statement on the subject.

Now, a group of lawyers under the umbrella of Lawyers Against Atrocities have published a report based on their findings, where a series of very serious allegations have been made against the police, based on eyewitness accounts of people the lawyers spoke to during the course of the fact-finding exercise.

The report traces the genesis of the sit in protest at the site stating, “On the 23rd of February 2020, responding to the Bhim Army’s call for a Bharat Bandh, the people of Khureji Khas conducted a sit-in protest on the Patparganj Road. On request from police officials to allow for the flow of vehicular traffic, the protesters complied by first allowing road access to the nearby Vivekananda Yogashram, then vacating half the road by the night of 23rd February and finally the entire road by noon of the following day. Despite returning to the protest site to continue the peaceful protest, heavy police deployment continued in Khureji Khas. On Monday and Tuesday (24th and 25th of February), the Delhi Police were a constant presence at the protest site. Lining the roads, the police intimidated protestors, especially women.”

The report then goes on to state what happened when the police tried to allegedly forcibly evict the protesters, “Suddenly without provocation, on the morning of 26th February 2020, the police personnel, many of whom did not bear their name tag, stormed into the protest site brandishing and discharging firearms and proceeded to evict the protestors, beating and injuring several in the process. It is reported that during this process, the police were seen destroying CCTV cameras, notably the one in front of the Hindustan Petroleum Pump. The police arrested several protestors, from the protest site and from their homes including Ishrat Jahan, Khalid Saifi, Mohammed Salim, Vikram Pratap, Salim Ansari and Sabhu Ansari among others taking them to the Jagatpuri Police Station.”

The report also highlights other alleged instances of police excesses stating, “While conducting raids in the locality, police are reported to have discharged their weapons twice at the entrance of the Jama Masjid Road. That evening, when lawyers arrived at Jagatpuri Police Station to enquire about the arrested, the police were verbally and physically abusive towards them. More arrests are reported to have occurred on the night of 26th January 2020 and then over the next two days, with police raiding homes of numerous residents and arbitrarily picking up people, including several minors, from the streets.”

The report presents case studies of many violence affected people in the neighbourhood and highlights their allegations of abuse of power by the police. It goes on to make the following demands:

1.            Immediate release of all those arrested and detained from Khureji since February 26th 2020 and dropping of charges against those arbitrarily picked up.

2.            Immediate investigation into police action in the area through SIT or an independent magisterial enquiry.

3.            Withdrawal of police deployment in the area and peaceful resumption of dialogue with the residents.

4.            Strict action against police personnel found participating in the beatings of peaceful protestors, breaking of CCTV cameras and molesting women in the area.

The entire report may be read here:

Delhi violence: What happened in Khureji Khas?

Fact-finding report by team of lawyers makes serious allegations against the police based on eyewitness accounts.

Delhi ViolenceImage Courtesy: indiatvnews.com

The Khureji Khas neighbourhood in North East Delhi has been in the eye of the storm of communal violence raging through the area. In fact, Khureji Khas was in the news along with Chand Bagh and Bhajanpura as reports of some of the worst kind of mob violence came from these neighbourhoods. Intelligence Bureau (IB) employee Ankit Sharma was allegedly killed by mobs in this area. Moreover, petrol bombs, large stones and acid pouches were recovered from the roof of a property owned by now suspended AAP MLA Tahir Hussain from the same region.

On February 25, police conducted a flag march in the area to control the violence. After the flag march on February 25 that was led by Special Commissioners of Police Satish Golcha and Praveer Ranjan, Golcha (Special Commissioner – Law&Order – Northern Range) had told India Today, “We are taking appropriate actions. The required force is being used. Tear gas and mild lathicharge has been used to control the crowd. We will detain the miscreants and appropriate action will be taken against them.”

On February 26, the protesters at the site were cleared away. It is around this time that a series of serious allegations have been made against the police; from brutally physically assaulting people, to breaking CCTVs and even manhandling women! These instances have been documented by several reputed publications such as Scroll in this report and The Wire in this report. Though there are several videos of these excesses being committed by the police, the Delhi Police are yet to issue an official statement on the subject.

Now, a group of lawyers under the umbrella of Lawyers Against Atrocities have published a report based on their findings, where a series of very serious allegations have been made against the police, based on eyewitness accounts of people the lawyers spoke to during the course of the fact-finding exercise.

The report traces the genesis of the sit in protest at the site stating, “On the 23rd of February 2020, responding to the Bhim Army’s call for a Bharat Bandh, the people of Khureji Khas conducted a sit-in protest on the Patparganj Road. On request from police officials to allow for the flow of vehicular traffic, the protesters complied by first allowing road access to the nearby Vivekananda Yogashram, then vacating half the road by the night of 23rd February and finally the entire road by noon of the following day. Despite returning to the protest site to continue the peaceful protest, heavy police deployment continued in Khureji Khas. On Monday and Tuesday (24th and 25th of February), the Delhi Police were a constant presence at the protest site. Lining the roads, the police intimidated protestors, especially women.”

The report then goes on to state what happened when the police tried to allegedly forcibly evict the protesters, “Suddenly without provocation, on the morning of 26th February 2020, the police personnel, many of whom did not bear their name tag, stormed into the protest site brandishing and discharging firearms and proceeded to evict the protestors, beating and injuring several in the process. It is reported that during this process, the police were seen destroying CCTV cameras, notably the one in front of the Hindustan Petroleum Pump. The police arrested several protestors, from the protest site and from their homes including Ishrat Jahan, Khalid Saifi, Mohammed Salim, Vikram Pratap, Salim Ansari and Sabhu Ansari among others taking them to the Jagatpuri Police Station.”

The report also highlights other alleged instances of police excesses stating, “While conducting raids in the locality, police are reported to have discharged their weapons twice at the entrance of the Jama Masjid Road. That evening, when lawyers arrived at Jagatpuri Police Station to enquire about the arrested, the police were verbally and physically abusive towards them. More arrests are reported to have occurred on the night of 26th January 2020 and then over the next two days, with police raiding homes of numerous residents and arbitrarily picking up people, including several minors, from the streets.”

The report presents case studies of many violence affected people in the neighbourhood and highlights their allegations of abuse of power by the police. It goes on to make the following demands:

1.            Immediate release of all those arrested and detained from Khureji since February 26th 2020 and dropping of charges against those arbitrarily picked up.

2.            Immediate investigation into police action in the area through SIT or an independent magisterial enquiry.

3.            Withdrawal of police deployment in the area and peaceful resumption of dialogue with the residents.

4.            Strict action against police personnel found participating in the beatings of peaceful protestors, breaking of CCTV cameras and molesting women in the area.

The entire report may be read here:

Related Articles

Assam Police Firing: Support for victims grows

12-hour Bandh in Assam, and protest by the Congress party even as nearly 3,000 police and paramilitary personnel are deployed to “maintain peace”

Assam Police Firing: Support for victims grows

12-hour Bandh in Assam, and protest by the Congress party even as nearly 3,000 police and paramilitary personnel are deployed to “maintain peace”


Sunday

03

Jan

Pan-India

Saturday

05

Dec

05 pm onwards

Rise in Rage!

North Gate, JNU campus

Thursday

26

Nov

10 am onwards

Delhi Chalo

Pan India

Theme

Taliban 2021

Taliban in Afghanistan: A look back

Communalism Combat had taken a deep dive into the lives of people of Afghanistan under the Taliban regime. Here we reproduce some of our archives documenting the plight of hapless Afghanis, especially women, who suffered the most under the hardline regime.
2020

Milestones 2020

In the year devastated by the Covid 19 Pandemic, India witnessed apathy against some of its most marginalised people and vilification of dissenters by powerful state and non state actors. As 2020 draws to a close, and hundreds of thousands of Indian farmers continue their protest in the bitter North Indian cold. Read how Indians resisted all attempts to snatch away fundamental and constitutional freedoms.
Migrant Diaries

Migrant Diaries

The 2020 COVID pandemic brought to fore the dismal lives that our migrant workers lead. Read these heartbreaking stories of how they lived before the pandemic, how the lockdown changed their lives and what they’re doing now.
Delhi HC

Hate Speech and Delhi Pogrom 2020

A spate of provocative speeches, that amount to hate speech in law and should be prosecuted allowed blood letting to spill on the streets of north east Delhi in February-March 2020

Campaigns

Sunday

03

Jan

Pan-India

Saturday

05

Dec

05 pm onwards

Rise in Rage!

North Gate, JNU campus

Thursday

26

Nov

10 am onwards

Delhi Chalo

Pan India

IN FACT

Analysis

Taliban 2021

Taliban in Afghanistan: A look back

Communalism Combat had taken a deep dive into the lives of people of Afghanistan under the Taliban regime. Here we reproduce some of our archives documenting the plight of hapless Afghanis, especially women, who suffered the most under the hardline regime.
2020

Milestones 2020

In the year devastated by the Covid 19 Pandemic, India witnessed apathy against some of its most marginalised people and vilification of dissenters by powerful state and non state actors. As 2020 draws to a close, and hundreds of thousands of Indian farmers continue their protest in the bitter North Indian cold. Read how Indians resisted all attempts to snatch away fundamental and constitutional freedoms.
Migrant Diaries

Migrant Diaries

The 2020 COVID pandemic brought to fore the dismal lives that our migrant workers lead. Read these heartbreaking stories of how they lived before the pandemic, how the lockdown changed their lives and what they’re doing now.
Delhi HC

Hate Speech and Delhi Pogrom 2020

A spate of provocative speeches, that amount to hate speech in law and should be prosecuted allowed blood letting to spill on the streets of north east Delhi in February-March 2020

Archives