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Delhi Horror: Documenting the organised mob violence and killings in India's national capital

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Delhi riots  Delhi killings  Delhi 2020 riots  Delhi genocide  Delhi pogrom  Killings  Pogrom  BJP  Kapil Mishra  Anti-Muslim killings




Shams Ur Rehman Alavi

[The horrific killings in Delhi have shaken the country and also drawn the attention of the world. The violence began when US president Donal Trump was still in India. The national capital saw absolute collapse of law-and-order and there was a clear failure of authorities to stop the violence when it began.

Though Delhi had witnessed the anti-Sikh pogrom in 1984 and the magnitude, the extent of killings was manifold, no one could have imagined that it was possible to have a similar law-and-order collapse in the capital once again. Yet, we have witnessed it all. Here is an overview of what happened in Delhi--the killings and bloodbath, in 50 points]


*Violence starts in North East Delhi on February 24

*In Khajuri Khas, mob out on the street and surprisingly some policemen also seen throwing stones

*Gangs of youths on the streets, attacking people, vandalizing property, targeting houses, mosques set afire

*The police fail to action despite the fact that Donald Trump was in Delhi

*Army not called out, questions raised that the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) that is in power in Delhi, was not showing leadership role

*Prime Minister, Home Minister remain silent

*Ambulances carrying patients were stopped, police did not allow until High Court intervened

*Multiple videos appear showing young boys openly spewing venom, raising inflammatory slogans and indulging in rioting

*Figure of deaths rises, more areas witness arson and attacks. Policemen seen smashing cameras.

*Amid violence, there are reports how Muslims formed a human chain and ensured that there was no harm to temples, especially, in Chandbagh and other localities

*Saffron flag atop a mosque that was vandalized in Ashok Nagar. Misbehaviour with victims' kin at hospitals and policemen mistreat victims' lawyers 

*Horrific images of people attacked, beaten, lynched in full public view. People attacked with an acid like substance, several victims risk losing eyesight

*An 85-year-old woman, Akbari, brunt to death in her house in Gamri Extenstion in Delhi. Gangs chanting the slogans marched into the streets

*Ankit Sharma, an intelligence bureau official, was found murdered. The body was recovered from the drain. Policeman Ratan Lal killed. 

*Reports came that a youth, Shahrukh, who was seen firing was arrested, but it was untrue. He was arrested several days later

*Justice Murlidhar who asked tough questions from the solicitar general and Delhi police over failure to stop violence, transferred. It was he who allowed passage of ambulances when police were stopping them

*Young men lose their lives in this madness. Ashfaq Husain, 22, who lived in Mustafabad, was killed barely 11 days after his marriage

*NSA Ajit Doval came to the streets and a video of his conversation with citizens was widely shared

*A video of a youth who was found chanting inflammatory slogans and was caught, made rounds on social media

*Positive reports too came about how people risked their lives to save people belonging to other communities

*Video of smoke billowing out and shrieks of women and children gives an indication about the lawlessness & audacity of rioters

*AAP leader Tahir Husain termed villain by several TV channels though he insisted that his house was under attack and he had called police to rescue him

*Extent of damage in arson, attacks is huge. Entire markets gutted, shops, belongings, property burnt. Schools set afire, shops attacked on the basis of signboards, owners' faith

*AAP chief Arvind Kejriwal accounced Rs 10 lakh to kin of each dead though the compensation of Rs 1 crore was announced for Ankit Sharma

*The photograph of the young boy crying in front of his father's body, a heart-rending moment, became one of the images that describe the mindless Delhi killings

*Questions raised on the role of administration, on the lack of initiative on part of Delhi CM, Home Minister, as well as Commissioner Amulya Patnaik

*A hungry scrap-dealer who was murdered, an eldelry man coming from Bihar and taking away his son's body, these instances showed the extreme brutality witnessed in Delhi

*Bodies were recovered from a drain in Gokulpuri

*Journalists attacked and the mob forced them to chant Hanuman Chalisa to prove that they were Hindu, many were asked to take off pants to check their religion

*A 30-year-old man, Musharraf was dragged out of home, beaten and lynched, all in fornt of his 11-year-old daughter who was begging killers to save his life

*Reports of how people wait outside hospitals for days to get bodies of their kin, a woman at the mortuary to get her father's burnt remains (limbs)

*The disturbing video of policemen forcing injured men to chant national anthem, and the death of one of these victims, Faizan, sends shockwaves

*Reports of molestations and sexual assaults with women reported in Delhi. Rioting men show their genitals to women, mock them.

*Visuals showing the destruction in Shiv Vihar evoke horror

*People expressed anger over delay in relief and rehabilitation work by the Delhi government

*Sikh community took lead in relief works, opened gurudwaras, many Sikhs saved lives of the victims

*The inability of police in stopping the mobs and their silence, even alleged collusion, was mentioned in reports after reports

*Islamophobic graffiti, shocking hate messages found written under the metro pillar in Maujpur

*One of the photograph that shows a man being beaten by rioters was of an Imam who had shut himself in his room at the top of mosque but policemen allegedly brought him out and handed him to rioters. He got critically injured but survived.

*People lost their savings of lifetime, children had no idea how to appear in examination as all documents burnt

*Heroic stories like that of Premkant Baghel who saved 6 people but suffered 70% burns, emerge

*A victim, was attacked with acid and doctors allegedly forged the MLC showing that incident occurred on another day so that he could be fabricated as a rioter. 

*Shocking account of doctor calling a victim, 'extremist' and 'terrorist' during treatment

*Even army and paramilitary force personnel not spared, and despite name plate the house of BSF jawan attacked

*Images of people leaving the city for their ancestral places along with the families

*The figure of death crosses 45

*A two-year-old girl found roaming on the streets, no one could trace her parents [Update, child reunited with parents]

*A petition seeking action against Kapil Mishra for instigating violence and demanding his prosecution, gets over 30,000 signatures

*The violence finally stops by February 29 but has left a trail of deaths and destruction in Delhi

*Over 600 houses were burnt in the violence, more than 1,500 arrested

*International media expresses shock and disbelief over the situation in Delhi

*Several countries and world leaders express concern over the killings in Delhi

*Kapil Mishra who gave hate speeches before the violence, gets Y plus security cover

*The death toll crosses 50, bodies found in drains

*But neither PM, nor Home Minister visit the affected areas of Delhi

*No policeman faces action despite complaints of inaction (or collusion) and evidence 

 *19 mosques that were vandalized (at least four burnt) to be repaired, says Delhi Waqf Board

*Police officials said that they'd force ready but orders to take action against rioters never came 

*A 13-year-old minor arrested, in jail for weeks. Poor parents unaware of Juvenile Justice Act & 'system' running around

*Even a 10-month-old baby was not spared, beaten with sticks and thrown on road, her collar bone broken 

*Muslim man guarding Ram Temple, surprisingly, gets arrested by the police. Report

* The number of missing husbands and sons going up as riot-hit Delhi tries to pick up the pieces. LINK

*Months after the case, none of the leaders who gave inflammatory speeches, arrested or even interrogated.

*Aftermath of Delhi riots. Survivors struggle to reconstruct burnt homes and rebuild shops and other businesses. LINK

*Investigation into the riot, targeted towards one end, says Delhi court. Police asked to ensure fair probe. LINK

Shams Ur Rehman Alavi

Journalist for more than 20 years. Had started his career with National Mail in the nineties. Worked as Special Correspondent with Hindustan Times, as an Assistant Editor with DB Post, later Contributing Editor with The Huffington Post, writes for First Post, The Wire, Newsd & several other major publications.