Monday, Sep 22, 2014

Trader attempts self-immolation as AMC demolishes illegal shopping complex

The civic body workers carry out the demolition of shopping complex in Jamalpur area of Ahmedabad on Tuesday. (Express photo by Javed  Raja) The civic body workers carry out the demolition of shopping complex in Jamalpur area of Ahmedabad on Tuesday. (Express photo by Javed Raja)
Express News Service | Ahmedabad | Posted: August 13, 2014 2:58 am

The Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) central zone demolition squads razed an illegally-built commercial complex behind the slaughter house on Tuesday. The demolition led to arguments and scuffle between traders and police. One of the traders reportedly poured kerosene on self and attempted to immolate. However, the police stopped him. The traders had reportedly got into a scuffle with police when the police tried to stop their protests.

The police said the trader, Ayub Nilgar, had recently bought a shop in the complex and was opposing its demolition. Ayub was detained and taken to police station. The police have made a note of the incident.

Since the illegal structure that was demolished included a private space reserved for worship (ibadat khana) on the second floor, it created lot of tension. But no untoward incident happened. Simran Developers, as the complex is named, has eighteen shops on the ground floor and houses on the first floor over which a place of worship was made. There was lot of resistance from locals in support of those living in the houses on the first floor who are said to be the relatives of builders. The house residents, the AMC staff said, were forewarned of the demolition as the stay on the demolition was vacated on Monday itself. However, angry residents claimed they were not informed of the action.

V K Balat, who headed the demolition operation, said the structure had come up in May 2013 illegally and a notice of demolition was issued to builder Hanif Lightwala and his partner Ahmedbhai Phoolwala. They had moved court and got the execution of notice stayed. The stay was till August 11, following which the demolition squads arrived on the spot. Local councillor Sharifkhan Dudhwala and AMTS member Mushtaq Khadiwala were present on the spot during the day-long operation, which  will be continued for a few days. They said this was a case of illegal construction without permission.

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