New Delhi, Nov 1 (IANS) The National Federation of Indian Women (NFIW) on Wednesday condemned the “forced evictions” in Kathputli Colony here, “rendering all its residents homeless”.
“A 500-strong police force with only 25-50 women personnel gheraoed the colony on October 30. They bulldozed residents’ homes, brutally beat up and injured everyone who resisted the demolition, including women and children,” the NFIW said in a statement.
The federation said that the eviction was done despite assurances to the contrary from Housing and Urban Development Minister Hardeep Singh Puri to its delegation earlier.
“Hundreds of residents were forcefully loaded in trucks and sent to unknown destinations.”
The residents have been evacuated from the area under a drive to shift them to a transit camp in Anand Parbat by the Delhi Development Authority (DDA), which owns the land.
The federation said that the eviction drive was carried out without any prior notice, and was in violation of a high court order, according to which no resident of the colony could be evicted without their consent.
Noting that Kathputli Colony had been home to puppeteers, magicians, acrobats, storytellers, folk singers, qawwals, snake charmers and dancers for about 70 years, the NFIW said: “DDA survey acknowledges only about 2,600 families out of the total 4,700.”
It also demanded strong action against those responsible for the “brutal lathi charge” and restoration of the colony with adequate compensation to the victims.
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