Death toll goes up to 43, new CP promises to 'treat all cases equally'
New Delhi: As clouds of smoke cleared to reveal the intensity of the damage from the riots, the death toll increased to 43 with over 300 injured. Amid the uneasy calm and relaxation in the imposition of Section 144, namaaz was held in the mosques of the area on Friday.
The newly-appointed Delhi Police Commissioner S N Shrivastava, who will take charge from Sunday, replacing Amulya Patnaik, said every case will be treated with equal importance.
Officials made extra efforts to quell the rumours and held regular flag marches and interactions in the neighbourhoods of the affected areas as confidence-building measures.
Shrivastava (1985 AGMUT cadre) surveyed several violence-hit areas before the commencement of the Friday prayers. He said: "We are trying to bring every culprit to justice and are working on it. We are giving equal treatment to all cases."
According to the Delhi Police, a total of 123 FIRs have been registered and 630 people have been either arrested or detained so far in connection with the north-east Delhi communal violence. The areas mainly affected include Jafrabad, Maujpur, Chand Bagh, Khureji Khas and Bhajanpura.
From Guru Tegh Bahadur Hospital over 35 have been reported dead, three from Lok Nayak Jay Prakash hospital and one from Jag Pravesh Chandra Hospital. Sources said half the people, who died or are injured in the violence, suffered bullet injuries.
Muslims returned for the weekly prayers at the mosques amid fear. Security was heightened in the area to ensure no untoward incident happens. Section 144, which prohibits public gathering, was relaxed in the affected areas for 10 hours. Mosques in north-east Delhi also appealed people to maintain peace and harmony in the area.
Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal paid a visit to the riot-affected areas and interacted with the locals.
Meanwhile, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said the Delhi government has set up nine shelters for the riot-affected people and is distributing food among them. For the assistance of the violence-hit, Kejriwal said the government has appointed 18 Magistrates and four-night Magistrates.
While the police claimed that the situation was peaceful, in a fresh case, a 60-year-old man, identified as Ayub, died after he was allegedly attacked by unidentified assailants in the bordering area of Delhi-Uttar Pradesh. Deceased's son Salman said around 6 am on Friday, his father (a ragpicker) had stepped out of his home to collect garbage when few unidentified assailants brutally attacked him. "I took him to GTB Hospital where he was declared brought dead. My father told me that he was attacked near Shiv Vihar area," Salman told Millennium Post.
Meanwhile, National Commission for Women (NCW) chairperson Rekha Sharma visited the riot-hit areas in north-east Delhi, to look into the condition of women.
On the other hand, the Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) has directed the Delhi Police to furnish details of crimes reported against women during the recent riot.