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Week after Delhi violence, death toll climbs to 53; 654 FIRs registered

Week after Delhi violence, death toll climbs to 53; 654 FIRs registered

The death toll in communal violence that broke out in northeast Delhi last month, which was sparked by protests over the amended Citizenship Act, climbed to 53 on Thursday. So far, GTB hospital has confirmed 44 deaths while three deaths have been confirmed at Lok Nayak hospital and five at RML and one at Jag Pravesh.

The Delhi government has decided to enhance compensation for damaged residential units in riot-affected areas. The government has set up nine shelters for victims of violence and it will start distributing Rs 25,000 in cash to those whose houses have been burnt down in the violence. Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal had earlier announced a compensation of Rs 10 lakh each for families of those who died in the communal violence

According to Delhi Police, 654 FIRs have been filed following violence that ravaged Maujpur, Jafrabad, Shiv Vihar, Mustafabad and Brijpuri. The police further said 1820 people have been detained and 47 peace committee meetings held in affected localities.

Earlier in the day, Aam Aadmi Party councillor Tahir Hussain, an accused in the murder of IB staffer Ankit Sharma during the violence, was arrested by a team of inter-state cell of Delhi Police's crime branch after his surrender plea was rejected by a Delhi court.

Hussain has denied the charge, claiming that he was nowhere near the area where Sharma was killed and has individuals who can testify the same.

Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei said Thursday that the Indian government should confront extremist Hindus and stop the 'massacre' of Muslims.

"The hearts of Muslims all over the world are grieving over the massacre of Muslims in India. The govt of India should confront extremist Hindus & their parties & stop the massacre of Muslims in order to prevent India's isolation from the world of Islam," Khamenei tweeted.

Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal on Thursday visited the riot-affected areas of northeast Delhi and took stock of the situation there. Baijal held a review meeting with officials on several issues, including security. He also held a meeting with peace committees in northeast Delhi.

Meanwhile, the Delhi High Court will on Friday resume hearings on a matter relating to provocative speeches given by political leaders, including those from the BJP, that allegedly incited violence in the area. The development came after the Supreme Court Wednesday observed that the one-month adjournment by the HC, in a previous order, was "unjustified".

On February 27, while hearing a plea seeking registration of FIRs against BJP leaders Anurag Thakur, Parvesh Sahib Singh, and Kapil Mishra and others for allegedly making provocative statements that sparked mob attacks in northeast Delhi, the Delhi HC had adjourned the hearing to April 13.

The Supreme Court has also sought the response of activist Harsh Mander whether he had made remarks against the top court and said it won't hear his plea unless he clarified on the matter. The apex court's reaction came after Solicitor General Tushar Mehta produced transcripts of his reported speech at Jamia. The Delhi police has submitted an affidavit in the Supreme Court seeking to quash Mander's plea, accusing him of delivering "hate speech".

(Inputs from theindianexpress.com)

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