Centre ordered demolition of temple in Delhi's Sriniwaspuri: AAP
The controversy over the anti-encroachment demolition campaign launched in several states took a new turn on Saturday. Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Atishi shared a letter on Twitter—purporting it was issued by the Centre—that ordered the demolition of a temple in Delhi's Sriniwaspuri area. This came as the debate over the demolition of a 300-year-old temple in Rajasthan's Alwar heated up on Saturday.
- Many states have lately witnessed anti-encroachment demolition drives, including in Delhi's Jahangirpuri following last Saturday's communal clashes.
- A similar drive in Rajasthan saw the destruction of two temples in the Alwar district last week. This sparked a political storm in the state, with Congress and BJP engaging in verbal sparring.
- Now, the Centre's alleged orders to demolish the Sriniwaspuri temple triggered a new row.
"The BJP-led central government has ordered to run bulldozers on the Neelkanth Mahadev temple in Sriniwaspuri," Atishi tweeted in Hindi. The letter allegedly issued by the Centre and shared by the AAP leader claimed the religious structure was constructed on government land without permission. It specified the government property in Sriniwaspuri must be vacated within seven days, adding the structure will otherwise be demolished.
भाजपा की केंद्र सरकार ने दिया श्रीनिवासपुरी स्थित नीलकंठ महादेव मंदिर पर बुल्डोज़र चलाने का आदेश pic.twitter.com/mEiTiCJXQu— Atishi (@AtishiAAP) April 23, 2022
Coming to the temple demolition in Alwar, the District Magistrate said the anti-encroachment drive was carried out on April 17-18. They added no legal structures were demolished and no protests occured during the drive. "Action was taken on three pre-constructed temples. One...was built recently. The idols installed in the private temple built on the drains were removed by the builders themselves," the DM stated.
The Alwar District Magistrate further said that personal notices to all the involved trespassers were issued back on April 6. They added that the temples were demolished only after a consensus was reached. "All the encroachments, including the temple, were demolished on April 17-18, but five days later, there is shock and commotion over the incident," the DM stated.