By TRT World team

For nine centuries, Indians prayed at the forest shrine of Baba Haji Rozbih, a revered Sufi master whose grave is one of the capital Delhi’s oldest Muslim sites.

Then, in early February, the Delhi Development Authority reduced the site to rubble, the latest victim of a “demolition programme” it says has cleared “illegal religious structures” including a mosque, tombs, shrines and Hindu temples.

The destruction has sparked heartbreak from residents and worried warnings from historians at the loss of priceless heritage.

“It’s a blow… to the history that made India what it is today,” said historian and author Rana Safvi.


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The demolitions come at a sensitive time, as Hindu nationalists have been emboldened to claim ancient Muslim monuments for the country’s majority faith.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi in January inaugurated a temple in the northern city of Ayodhya, built on the site of a centuries-old mosque whose destruction by Hindu zealots in 1992 sparked sectarian riots that killed 2,000 people nationwide, most of them Muslims.

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