Free Press Journal

Karbala land dispute: HC for resolving matter amicably


New Delhi: The Delhi High Court today asked the Anjuman-e-Haideri trust which manages the Karbala lands and their people who run a nursery there to sit together and resolve their dispute so that peace can be maintained in the area which is located close to Jor Bagh here.

Justice Manmohan suggested that a meeting be held between the two groups within the High Court premises itself to resolve their differences, so that the large police presence in the area can be brought down.

The court, however, refused to pass any order on the plea of Delhi police which sought a stay on commercial activity of Rajdhani nursery.

Meanwhile, another court hearing the arbitration matter between the Trust and the nursery on the land issue today ordered maintaining of status quo in the area.

During the proceedings, Justice Manmohan asked both sides to sit together and talk so that the situation can go back to the way it was three-five years ago when the two groups were at peace.

The application of Delhi police comes in the wake of the recent clashes that took place between the two groups and the cops on the night of March 30 when a large number of people belonging to the Anjuman Trust had gathered at the Karbala grounds for a religious meeting.

The area has witnessed violent protests in the last few months over the issues of ownership of the Karbala land on which a nursery has been built as well as the presence of some graves there where people go to offer prayers.

Additional Solicitor General Sidharth Luthra, appearing for Delhi police, said that in the clashes a DCP was seriously injured and now over 300 cops have been deployed in the area to maintain peace.

The Anjuman-e-Haideri people argued that the increased police presence during their religious meeting of March 30 and thereafter, has created tension in the area.

They said that they had given written undertakings to the police and other authorities that no protest will be held, despite which heavy police presence was there which heightened tensions.

The nursery owners also blamed the police for locking the entry gate of their establishment and accused them of colluding with the other side.

The court, after hearing both the sides, asked them to amicably resolve the issue so that peace and tranquillity can be maintained there.

The court warned that if the situation escalates and police have to use force, then innocents could be killed.

It said that if the parties resolve their differences on their own, then the police presence can be reduced and thus the tension in the area can be brought down.

On January 22, the court had directed that the people whose relatives have been buried in the graves inside the nursery be allowed to visit them after writing their names in a register.

Thereafter, on March 28, the high court had barred holding of any protest at Karbala on March 31 and had said that any demonstration be held at designated places like Ramlila Maidan or Jantar Mantar after taking permission.

On March 30, however, clashes had occurred at the Karbala grounds, in which some cops were injured and FIRs were lodged against some of the people arrested from the area.