A fact-finding committee of the Delhi Minorities Commission has found BJP MP Parvesh Verma's claim to be "false" that mosques and graveyards were "mushrooming" on government land in the city.
A report of the panel released on Thursday, 1 August, at DMC office has recommended registration of an FIR against Verma for allegedly "making false claims, spreading rumours to target a particular community" and disturbing "communal harmony" in Delhi.
"The committee visited and probed documents of a total 68 mosques, graveyards, madrasas and imambaras, including 54 cited by Verma in his list but none of these structures were found to be on encroached government land," committee chairman Owais Sultan said.
The BJP MP, however, rubbished the committee’s report, questioning the jurisdiction of the DMC in land matters.
"Who asked them to inspect the encroachments, are they any land owning agencies? The agencies like DDA, MCDs and DUSIB which own land have to see if such encroachment existed," Verma told PTI.
He had complained to Lt Governor Anil Baijal, alleging that he found 54 cases of encroachment of government land by mosques and graveyards in his parliamentary constituency West Delhi and also in North West Delhi.
"After I met the Lt Governor, the district magistrates concerned were directed to probe the matter," he claimed.
The DMC report said that out of 58 religious and educational structures visited by the committee, including those cited by Verma, application for allotment of land in case of 23 mosques and one imambara were filed by their management committees.
Seven mosques were located on land allocated by DDA, DUSIB and gram sabha. In eight places, no mosques or graveyards were found. Two mosques and graveyards each and a madarsa belonged to the Delhi Waqf Board, while six mosques and one madarsa were situated on private land, it said.
"Interestingly a mosque in Sultanpuri built around 1617, (which is) under the Delhi Waqf Board, has been claimed as an encroachment on government land," Sultan said.
The committee said that it had “discovered proliferation of temples” at pavements, public parks, under trees and on the roads.
DMC chairman Zafarul Islam Khan said that the report was handed over to him on Tuesday and its recommendations will be studied before any further action.
"We will study the report and its recommendations and decide what action is needed," he said when asked if the DMC will file a case against Verma or lodge a complaint against him with the Ethics Committee of the Lok Sabha.
The fact-finding committee was formed by DMC taking cognisance of the allegations made by Verma last month.
Khan said the BJP leader's charge is "incorrect" as shown in the report which also probed records of mosques and graveyards cited by Verma.
He said the report will be submitted to the Lt Governor and other authorities.