#IndianMuslimsUnderAttack: India bulldozes Muslim businesses, amid mosque loudspeakers ban

#IndianMuslimsUnderAttack: India bulldozes Muslim businesses, amid mosque loudspeakers ban
Indian authorities continued to bulldoze a mosque entrance and surrounding properties in New Delhi despite the Supreme Court issuing a staying order on the demolition.
3 min read
20 April, 2022
Authorities continued to destroy property in New Delhi despite a Supreme Court order [Getty]

Indian authorities continued to bulldoze Muslim properties in New Delhi on Wednesday, hours after the Supreme Court ordered a halt to the planned levellings, as a local government ordered restrictions on mosque loudspeakers.

India's Supreme Court on Wednesday issued a stay order on a demolition drive in New Delhi, allegedly to remove structures built without permission, until it could hear the case on Thursday.

Authorities however continued to bulldoze the entrance gate of a mosque and nearby Muslim-owned shops an hour after the order was put in place.

The destruction took place in the Jahangirpuri locality in New Delhi, just days after the neighbourhood had seen communal violence sparked by a Hindu procession.

Indian authorities in other states such as Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat have been accused of using home demolitions as collective punishment against those accused of being involved in violence.

Many of the levelled homes belong to India's Muslim minority.

It came as the government of neighbouring Uttar Pradesh, India’s largest state, issued a directive placing restrictions on loudspeakers at religious sites that would affect the adhan – the Muslim call to prayer.

The move follows a series of hate crimes and incendiary speeches against the state's Muslim community. Some Hindu nationalists have called for the ethnic cleansing of Muslims from India.

The directive came from Yogi Adityanath,  a hardline monk who is the chief minister of Uttar Pradesh and a senior member of Narendra Modi’s Hindu nationalist Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP).

“Although mics can be used, make sure the sound does not come out of any premises. Other people should not face any problem," he was quoted as saying by the Hindustan Times.

Adityanath has reportedly cancelled leave for police to maintain law and order until after the Muslim celebration of Eid ul-Fitr in early May as it could clash with the Hindu festival of Akshaya Tritiya.

Indian Muslims have been routinely targeted by right-wing mobs and authorities over the past few weeks.

Dozens of Muslims were accused by the BJP of participating in violence over the past week that was reportedly instigated by right-wing Hindu groups when bands of armed men gathered in Muslim areas across India, chanting provocative slogans.

They also planted saffron flags - associated with Hinduism - on top of mosques.

The attacks on Muslims came amid right-wing rallies celebrating the Hindu festival of Ram Navami - which commemorates the birth of Lord Ram, one of the chief Hindu deities.