Haldwani Muslims Fear Death Toll Maybe Higher Than Official Figures: Fact-Finding Report (The Wire)

Residents told the fact-finding team that on February 8 evening, officers arrived with bulldozers, municipal workers and significant police protection to undertake the demolition of the mosque and the madrasa "despite the matter being sub-judice".

Protesters at Haldwani. Photo: Sumedha Pal/The Wire

By The Wire Staff

New Delhi: In the aftermath of the violence which erupted in Gafoor Basti, Haldwani on February 8 over the demolition of a mosque and madrasa built on government land, the police searched approximately 300 homes and the reported beatings, detentions and property damages and internet shutdown in the area aggravated the fear of the locals and they feel that the actual death toll may be higher than the official figures, a seven-member fact finding team wrote in a report on the Haldwani violence.

Officially, six people were reportedly killed in the clashes. The incident was an “outcome” of the “narrative” built by Uttarakhand Chief Minster Pushkar Dhami and radical right-wing citizen groups to create the northern state as “a Devbhoomi – the holy land for Hindus, which would have no place for other religious minorities,” the citizen fact finding report by Association for Protection of Civil Rights (APCR), Karawan-e-Mohabbat and civil rights activist Zahid Qadri suggested. 

The report underlined that there was a steady rise in communal tempers in Uttarakhand over the last couple of years which also resulted in calls for economic and social boycotts of Muslims and eviction of Muslim tenants from houses and shops and demands and threats for them to leave the state.

This story was originally published in thewire.in. Read the full story here.

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