According to officials, during the clash in Nuh, mobs gathered at the roof of Sahara hotel as well as the tiles showroom at Tiranga Chowk to target a religious procession with stones, forcing the participants to take cover at Nalhar temple nearby.
Deputy commissioner Dhirendra Khadgata said at a press conference on Sunday that 57 acres of government land has been cleared of encroachments over 35 locations in Nuh since Thursday.
The demolitions began with the administration razing to the ground 150 shanties at a slum dwelling where migrant families lived for years in Tauru. On Friday, five houses were torn down in Nalhar and the day after, 46 pucca houses and shops, including pharmacies, were bulldozed. Police had earlier said people running or living in these structures were suspected to be involved in rioting, though encroachment is cited as the official reason.
After the clash in Nuh ignited a series of attacks and spread to Gurgaon, Palwal and Faridabad, state home minister Anil Vij had said that bulldozers are part of the “ilaaj (treatment)” as the government probes communal violence.
On Sunday, the deputy commissioner said “demolitions will continue” in the district.
Asked about the settlements being razed, Khadgata said the department of town and country planning had served notices for encroachments in 2022.
“These are the structures that the youngsters used to throw stones from. Now, we are taking strong decisions and demolishing these constructions. This drive will continue in future as well,” he said, adding the occupants were given ample time to evacuate before the bulldozers were brought.
On August 6, TOI had reported about the slum-dwellers who were left homeless after the demolition in Tauru. Most of them said they belonged to Assam and West Bengal, and had been living in the area for the past few years without receiving any notice for vacating.
On the restrictions enforced to clamp down on disinformation, the DC said that the administration is looking into the situation and will “increase the time for curfew relaxation” considering law and order is maintained.
Curfew restrictions were lifted for three hours (9 am to noon) on Sunday and will be increased to four hours on Monday. Bank employees, too, will be allowed to work between 10 am and 3pm.
Internet restrictions, however, are still in effect.
Nuh SP Narendra Bijarniya, also at the press briefing, said 147 men have been arrested in connection with 56 FIRs registered over the communal violence.
“Senior officials of the SITs formed by the government visited Nalhar temple and even the area around the Aravali hills from where miscreants fired bullet rounds by hiding themselves. We are conducting flag marches, so that no untoward situation happens again,” he said.