Haryana's Reply To Court's "Ethnic Cleansing" Question On Nuh Demolitions

The government was responding to the Punjab and Haryana High Court which had issued a strongly-worded order halting the demolitions.

The court notice to Haryana government had an "ethnic cleansing" reference. (File)

New Delhi:

The demolitions carried out following the communal violence in Gurugram and Nuh were in accordance with the law and the question of "ethnic cleansing" does not arise, the Haryana government said today.

The government was responding to the Punjab and Haryana High Court which had issued a strongly-worded order halting the demolitions. The court notice had an "ethnic cleansing" reference.

The government on Friday told a bench of Justices Arun Pillai and Jagmohan Bansal that notices were issued as per the law and rules were followed to carry out the demolitions.

Additional Advocate General Deepak Sabherwal made the submission orally and sought more time to file a written response, stating that data in this regard was being compiled.

The court directed the matter should be heard by the Chief Justice and adjourned the hearing till next Friday.

Clashes had broken out between two communities during a religious procession in Nuh on July 31. The ripples of the violence were felt about 40 km away in Gurugram too, where a shop and some shanties were burnt down by a mob.

In prompt action, Haryana replicated an Uttar Pradesh-style bulldozer justice, demolishing over 350 shanties and 50 cement structures over four days in Nuh.

The Punjab and Haryana High Court last Monday ordered the demolitions to be stopped and questioned if the bulldozer action was focused on a particular community under the guise of law and order problem.

"The issue also arises whether the buildings belonging to a particular community are being brought down under the guise of law and order problem, and an exercise of ethnic cleansing is being conducted by the State," the order had said.

The court had also referred to Haryana Home Minister Anil Vij's remark that bulldozers were part of ilaaj (treatment) as the state government is probing communal violence.

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