Demolition drives against alleged illegal constructions were undertaken in several parts of Delhi on Wednesday, 11 May. The areas where the drives were carried out include Dwarka, Lodhi Road, Najafgarh, Janakpuri and Chaukhandi among others.
Several residents protested against the drive in Janakpuri, but it was carried out nonetheless.
"We have removed only illegal temporary structures and kiosks. It is our duty to remove encroachment and we will continue our crackdown on violators," said chairperson of South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC) West Zone Shveta Saini, as per PTI.
Meanwhile, a demolition drive scheduled in Seelampur could not be carried out by the East Delhi Municipal Corporation (EDMC) due to unavailability of adequate police personnel, the area's Mayor Shyam Sunder Aggarwal was reported as saying by PTI.
SDMC Central Zone chairman Rajpal Singh had earlier said that illegal encroachments had already been identified on Lodhi Road.
"We do not want to harass anyone but there are some places where even a van or bus cannot pass. So we will continue with the process of demolition until and unless all the encroachments are removed," Singh said.
He also said that their plan was to remove illegal structures that are currently blocking roads, adding that school buses, ambulances, and fire brigades could not access the roads because of the encroachments, ANI reported.
'Political Parties Intimidating People': Singh
"Those who have not encroached need not fear. We will bulldoze as well as manually remove the encroachments," he further said, adding that people of political parties were working on intimidating people whereas the SDMC was talking about unity, integrity and development of the country.
Several policemen could also be seen standing atop buildings to oversee the security situation amid the demolition drives on Wednesday.
Left-Wing Groups March to Lt Governor's Residence to Protest
Several left-wing organisations also staged a protest and undertook a citizens' march to Delhi Lt Governor Anil Baijal's residence to protest against the drives being conducted by municipal corporations run by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
The march began from Kashmere Gate and was stopped by the police before it could reach Baijal's residence.
Earlier, the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) had conveyed its plans to carry out demolition drives against alleged illegal structures. As a result, a majority of people had removed their structures themselves.
This comes after a demolition drive scheduled for 9 May at Delhi's Shaheen Bagh was not conducted after protests broke out in the area. Shaheen Bagh was the epicentre of anti-Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA) protests in 2019-20.
A day after the ruckus in Shaheen Bagh, a drive was conducted at the New Friends Colony (NFC) and Mongolpuri areas against alleged illegal encroachments.
(With inputs from IANS, ANI and PTI.)