UP: Authorities demolish 'illegally constructed' house of Prayagraj violence accused
Authorities in Uttar Pradesh have reportedly launched a demolition drive at the house of a key accused in the Prayagraj violence with heavy security deployed outside the residence. The accused—identified as Javed Ahmed—is a local leader and was named as a key conspirator in the protests that erupted in Prayagraj against the former Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) spokesperson Nupur Sharma's remarks on Prophet Muhammad.
- Uttar Pradesh's Prayagraj witnessed violent protests and clashes on Friday as a section of its minority population staged a protest against BJP's now-suspended spokesperson Sharma's controversial statements against the Prophet.
- The Prayagraj Development Authority (PDA) reportedly started identification of illegal constructions and encroachments in Atala and nearby areas after the police and administrative officials issued warnings about illegal properties of rioters following Friday's violence.
Ahmed is a resident of JK Ashiana Colony in the Kareli locality of Prayagraj's old city area. The PDA issued a demolition notice, asking him to vacate the house by 11:00 am on Sunday. The demolition notice said the house was "illegally constructed." Officials said most of the household items were already removed and workers were pressed into service to remove the remaining items.
According to officials, some flags and a poster with the slogan, "When Injustice Becomes Law, Rebellion Becomes Duty," were found in Ahmed's house during the demolition activity.
Notably, Ahmed has already been arrested in connection with the Prayagraj violence case. "Mastermind Javed Ahmed detained, there could be more masterminds," Prayagraj Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Ajay Kumar said. "The anti-social elements used minor kids to hurl stones at the police and administration. A case registered under 29 crucial sections. Action will be taken under Gangster Act and the NSA," he added.
Kumar said the police had identified some individuals believed to be behind the arson and violence. "These people include some who were at the forefront of the anti-CAA protests of 2020 in Prayagraj. None of the trouble makers or the people behind them would be spared," he added. The police have included 95 named and around 5,400 unnamed persons in three FIRs.
Meanwhile, Ahmed's daughter Afreen Fatima, who is also an activist, has written a letter to the National Commission for Women regarding the arrest of her family members. Reportedly, in that letter, Fatima has alleged that her family members were arrested without any warrant.