Delhi Violence Updates: Death Toll Climbs To 38 As Violence Ebbs But Doesn’t Subside
The death toll in Delhi’s worst riots in over three decades climbed to 38 on Thursday as the violence ebbed but did not subside completely and thousands of people began picking up the pieces of their shattered lives and livelihoods.
Four days after communal clashes that began in northeast Delhi over the amended citizenship law and spiralled into bloodshed, arson and looting, the body of a man was found in a drain in Johri Enclave and there were scattered incidents of vehicles and shops being set on fire in Maujpur, Bhajanpura and other areas.
While there was no precise figure for the number of arrests, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta told the Delhi High Court that 48 FIRs were lodged in relation to the violence.
Delhi Police transferred the riots probe to the Crime Branch and formed two Special Investigation Teams.
The GTB Hospital in Dilshad Garden, where many of the 200 injured in the riots that broke out on Monday are being treated and where scores of people lined up outside the mortuary to claim the bodies of their loved ones, recorded five more deaths.
Eleven more deaths were reported on Thursday, taking the total death toll to 38, a senior Delhi Health Department official told PTI.
The opposition Congress took the issue to the Rashtrapati Bhavan. Accusing Home Minister Amit Shah of “abdication of duty”, a Congress delegation led by party chief Sonia Gandhi urged President Ram Nath Kovind to call for his resignation and remind the Centre of its “raj dharma”.
“The situation is returning to normal. We are here to reassure people that we are with them,” newly appointed Special Commissioner SN Shrivastava, who visited the affected areas, told reporters.
Battle-scarred and desolate with scorched, blackened walls, the ashen remains of vehicles, glass shards and bricks, several fires still burnt in the neighbourhoods of the national capital’s northeastern edge.
Shops, pharmacies and other establishments were closed and people stayed indoors unless it was imperative to step out. Several families were seen leaving with whatever they could salvage from their vandalised homes.
As they tried to come to terms with the losses to their shops, workshops and in some cases fruit and vegetable carts, residents recounted the violence of the night before.
In Yamuna Vihar, three to four rioters came around 4 am on Thursday to burn vehicles.
“One of them was holding a bucket in his hand. He started pouring some liquid on three vehicles. One of the cars caught fire. We raised an alarm after which they fled,” a local told PTI, saying groups of people in the neighbourhood stay up all night to keep watch.
A few kilometres away, a charred board at a private school in Brijpuri read, “Welcome to a very happy school”.
The 52-year-old Arun Modern Senior Secondary School looks no less than a cemetery, said an official, looking around at the damage which he estimated to be over Rs 70 lakh.
The GTB Hospital also presented a picture of despair with some sobbing uncontrollably and others maintaining a stoic silence with barely held back tears as they waited at the hospital to receive the bodies of those killed in the communal mayhem.
Among those who lost their lives was 22-year-old Ashfaq Hussain, an electrician who got married only 10 days ago and was shot while he was returning home in Gokalpuri after attending to a complaint.
Still trying to wrap his head around what had happened, his relative held up a smiling photograph of his bride Tasneem Fatima.
Relatives of 35-year-old Mudassir Khan from Kardampuri said they have been coming to the mortuary for two days to claim his body.
“Today, we have been waiting here since 8 am and the post-mortem is finally underway,” said Arbaaz Khan.
Mudassir, who worked in scrap manufacturing unit, was outside his house on Monday when he was attacked by a mob, his family said. He sustained a bullet injury on his head and was declared brought dead by doctors at GTB hospital.
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal announced his government will give Rs 10 lakh to the families of those who lost their lives and those seriously injured will get Rs 2 lakh.
He also said the government will bear the cost of the treatment of those injured in the violence and admitted to private hospitals.
Asked about the alleged involvement of his Aam Aadmi Party councillor Tahir Hussain in the riots, Kejriwal said, “If those involved in the riots are found to be from the AAP, give them double punishment.” Hussain has denied any involvement in the riots or the killing of an Intelligence Bureau staffer Ankit Sharma whose family accused him of being behind the murder, saying they are “baseless accusations”. Police later registered an FIR against Hussain on a complaint by Sharma’s father.
Meanwhile, the government hit back at comments on the violence by the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom and by “few individuals” as well as by the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation. “We have seen comments made by U.S. CIRF, sections of the media and a few individuals regarding recent incidents of violence in Delhi. These are factually inaccurate and misleading, and appear to be aimed at politicising the issue,” External Affairs Ministry Spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said.
“The statements which have come out of OIC are factually inaccurate, they are selective, they are misleading. There is an effort on the ground, to restore normalcy, to create confidence,” Kumar said.
Taking cognisance of the concerns of students taking board exams, the Central Board of Secondary Education will conduct fresh exams unable to appear for papers in other parts of the national capital due to the violence in northeast Delhi, officials said.
Here are developments from the fourth day of Delhi violence:
AAP Suspends Councillor Accused Of Being Involved In Violence (10:50 p.m.)
The Aam Aadmi Party has suspended its councillor Tahir Hussain from the primary membership of the party till police probe is completed, AAP sources said on Thursday.
Hussain is accused of being involved in the death of an intelligence bureau staffer Ankit Sharma, who was found dead on Wednesday in a drain in northeast Delhi’s riot-hit Chand Bagh area. Following the allegations, police have charged Hussain with murder.
Court Makes Centre A Party Over Hate Speech By BJP Leaders (7:50 p.m.)
The Delhi High Court on Thursday made the Centre a party in the public interest litigation which has sought lodging FIRs and arrests in communal violence in northeast Delhi over the amended citizenship law and gave it four weeks to file a reply to the petition.
A bench of Chief Justice DN Patel and Justice C Hari Shankar said that “looking at the complexity of the situation”, the central government was seeking more time to file a reply to the plea which has also sought lodging of FIRs against three BJP leaders over their alleged hate speeches in connection with the Citizenship Amendment Act related violence.
On Wednesday, a different bench of the high court, comprising of Justices S Muralidhar and Talwant Singh, had expressed anguish over the police failure to register FIR against the three BJP leaders -- Anurag Thakur, Parvesh Verma and Kapil Mishra -- over their alleged hate speeches and had asked the police commissioner to take a “conscious decision” on it by Thursday. Justice Muralidhar was transferred late last evening to the Punjab and Haryana High Court, days after the Supreme Court collegium had made the recommendation.
When the arguments commenced post-lunch on Thursday before the new bench, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta at the outset said some of the alleged hate speeches in question were three weeks to more than a month old and yet instead of waiting for one more day the matter was mentioned by the petitioners before the bench headed by Justice Muralidhar on the ground that there was “great urgency”.
Mehta said the petitioners could have waited for one more day as the matter was listed for hearing before the Chief Justice’s bench on Thursday.
The SG said that everyone was trying to restore normalcy in the national capital and urged the court not to intervene at this stage as it would not be conducive to maintaining law and order in the city.
He further said: “Considering the prevailing situation, it is the considered opinion of the police authorities that any decision at this juncture may not be conducive for restoration of normalcy. The decision (on lodging of FIR) will be taken at an appropriate stage in accordance with law.”
The SG also submitted that the authorities have examined all the audio/video clips and other material including that on Twitter and “after having carefully considered all these materials, a conscious decision is taken to defer the decision on the question (of lodging FIR)“.
He also urged the court to allow the impleadment application moved by the Ministry of Home Affairs, instead of waiting for the petitioners' reply as done by the previous bench.
“Union of India’s impleadment cannot depend on the yes or no of the petitioner,” said Mehta, who also stated he was authorised by the LG to appear for the police.
Delhi government standing counsel Rahul Mehra, who also claimed to be appearing for the police, said he will not get into the issue of appearance and instead urged the bench to issue some directions in view of the seriousness of the situation prevailing in north-east district of the city.
Mehra said, “The court yesterday had asked why FIRs regarding hate speeches were not lodged when FIRs for other offences have been registered”.
He also told the bench that as on date 48 FIRs have been registered in connection with the deaths, arson, loot and other offences committed in that area.
The death toll in the communal violence reached 34 on Thursday, with around 200 people injured.
“In larger interest of the citizens some directions may be issued,” Mehra told the court.
However, the SG said the MHA and police need time to file a reply.
He also told the court that the hate speeches would be looked into and a decision would be taken on what has to be done and added that the decision taken would be indicated in the MHA response.
Senior advocate Colin Gonsalves, who appeared for petitioners Harsh Mander and Farah Naqvi, said there was “hatred in the air” due to the alleged hate speeches and "it resulted in the deaths, arson and looting”. He said if hate speeches led to murder, then those making such speeches would be responsible for the death.
“FIR has to be lodged immediately, today itself. These people should be arrested and taken off the streets,” he added.
The high court had on Wednesday had observed that the city had seen enough violence and it should not witness another 1984 anti-Sikh riots-like incident.
Police Forms Special Investigation Teams To Probe Violence (7:15 p.m.)
The Delhi Police transferred northeast Delhi riots probe to the crime branch, and formed two Special Investigation Teams to probe the violence, officials said on Thursday.
The teams will be headed Deputy Commissioners of Police Joy Tirkey and Rajesh Deo. The teams will have four Assistant Commissioner of Police-rank officers each and the probe will be supervised by Additional Commissioner of Police B K Singh.
The police has so far filed 48 FIRs.
Delhi Police's Inaction Reminiscent Of 1984: Shiromani Akali Dal’s Naresh Gujral (5:32 p.m.)
Shiromani Akali Dal's Member of Parliament Naresh Gujral said that the Delhi Police's "inaction" towards protecting the lives and properties of minorities in the national capital is "reminiscent" of what happened during the 1984 anti-Sikh riots.
The lawmaker, whose party is a BJP ally, said no one would want a repeat of 1984.
Speaking to Press Trust of India after shooting off a letter to Delhi Police chief Amulya Patnaik, Gujral, the son of former prime minister IK Gujral, said that minorities in certain parts of the city are "frightened".
"Because their lives and properties have not been protected by the Delhi Police, which is very similar to what we saw in 1984. It's shocking,” Gujral said.
In his letter, he has slammed the Delhi Police for allegedly not acting on his complaint in which he had requested the police to come to the aid of 16 people of the minority community. "When a Member of Parliament's complaint is not paid heed to, one can imagine plight of the common man. No sane Indian wants a repeat of 1984," Gujral said.
'Gujarat Model' Replicated In Delhi, Amit Shah Must Go: NCP (5:26 p.m.)
Alleging that "Gujarat model" has been replicated in Delhi, the Nationalist Congress Party today called for Union Home Minister Amit Shah’s resignation.
The responsibility of maintaining law and order in Delhi is with the home ministry.
Maharashtra minister and NCP national spokesperson Nawab Malik also demanded a probe into whether the home minister could not handle the situation in the national capital or he had allegedly given instructions to the police to not respond quickly to the situation.
Opposition parties have accused the Delhi Police of being a silent spectator to the riots, death toll due to which rose to 34 today.
The Congress has already demanded Shah’s resignation.
Arvind Kejriwal Announces ‘Farishte’ Scheme For Riot-Affected (5:07 p.m.)
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has announced the state government's 'Farishte' scheme for free-of-cost medical treatment for those affected by the Delhi riots.
"The Delhi government will bear expenses of treatment of those injured in riots and admitted to private hospitals," Kejriwal said at a press meet in Delhi. The government will also give Rs 10 lakh to families of those killed in riots and Rs 5 lakh to those seriously injured.
Special camps will be set up for people to get the documents destroyed in the arson and violence, the chief minister said.
BJP Responsible For Delhi Violence, Does Politics By 'Spreading Hatred': Akhilesh Yadav (4:39 p.m.)
Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav today blamed the Bharatiya Janata Party for the communal violence in northeast Delhi, saying this is their "Gujarat model", and alleged that the saffron party does politics "by spreading hatred".
"BJP is responsible for the riots. It's their Gujarat model, which is nothing but spreading hatred," Yadav said when asked about the Delhi violence.
"When the U.S. President was here and lakhs of policemen were deployed, how can a riot happen? Had the government and police wanted, riots could not have happened. It's their failure that they even could not control riots in Delhi," he said.
The former Uttar Pradesh chief minister attacked the BJP, saying they do politics "by threatening and spreading hatred".
"They are damaging brotherhood to divert attention. When there is a riot no will ask about roads, development, employment, investment and black money", Yadav said.
On Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, he said, "The chief minister does not know political dignity. The language he speaks cannot be of an elected representative."
CBSE Postpones Class 10, 12 Board Exams Scheduled For Feb. 28, 29 In Northeast Delhi (4:34 p.m.)
Central Board of Secondary Education has postponed Class 10 and 12 board exams scheduled on Feb. 28 and 29 in violence-hit northeast Delhi and parts of east Delhi, officials said.
"In view of a request received from the Delhi government and to avoid inconvenience to students, staff and parents, the exams scheduled for Feb. 28 and 29 in North East Delhi and other affected areas stand cancelled. The next date for the affected students will be notified shortly," CBSE Secretary Anurag Tripathi said.
"All exams in all centres across Delhi will be conducted as per original schedule from March 2 onwards," he said.
AAP Councillor Denies Involvement In Killing Of IB Staffer (4:11 p.m.)
Aam Aadmi Party’s Councillor Tahir Hussain denied today any involvement in the Delhi riots or the killing of an Intelligence Bureau staffer whose family accused him of being behind the murder, saying these are "baseless accusations".
He called for an impartial probe into the incident and said action should be taken against the guilty. "It is wrong to target me. My family and I have nothing to do with it," Hussain said. The AAP leader also demanded strict action against BJP leaders for alleged hate speeches.
Ankit Sharma (26), who worked for the Intelligence Bureau, went missing on Tuesday and his body was found in a drain near his home in northeast Delhi's Chand Bagh area on Wednesday. His family members claimed that the local councillor and his associates were behind the killing.
Hussain has rejected the allegations.
"I came to know from news reports that I am being blamed for the murder of a man. These are lies and baseless accusations. For our safety, my family and I had moved away from our home on Monday in police presence," he said.
Congress, AAP Are ‘Politicising’ The Riots, BJP Says (4:00 p.m.)
The Bharatiya Janata Party today accused the Congress and the Aam Aadmi Party of "politicising" the Delhi riots.
The saffron party claimed that attempts to instigate violence had been made for two months after Congress President Sonia Gandhi gave the call for "aar ya paar" (fight to the finish) in December last year.
Addressing a press conference at the BJP office in New Delhi, Union Minister Prakash Javadekar asked why other political parties were silent on attacks on the policemen and on the death of Intelligence Bureau staffer Ankit Sharma. "In such a situation, the duty of all political parties should be to consolidate peace," he said.
Targeting the AAP, which governs Delhi, Javadekar said that the party’s MLAs should have worked for peace, but Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal identified riot victims by religion in the state assembly.
Javadekar said the BJP was working to restore peace and condemned the Congress and the AAP for doing politics over the violence. He asserted that peace was restored in two days due to Union Home Minister Amit Shah's effective handling.
He said the Congress's demand for Shah's resignation was "petty politics".
Delhi HC Allows Centre's Impleadment In PIL Seeking FIRs, Arrests (3:52 p.m.)
The Delhi High Court today allowed the Centre's impleadment in the public interest litigation seeking FIRs and arrests in the Delhi violence case.
A bench of Chief Justice DN Patel and Justice C Hari Shankar granted four weeks to the Centre and the police to file their replies to the PIL seeking lodging of FIRs against alleged hate speeches by three BJP leaders.
Solicitor General Tushar Mehta told the bench that since the Centre is responsible for maintaining law and order in Delhi, it be made a party in the matter, which was allowed by the court.
At the outset, Mehta told the bench that 48 FIRs have been lodged in relation to the violence and there be no judicial intervention till normalcy is restored in the national capital. The FIRs lodged so far relate to arson, looting and deaths.
The death toll in the violence reached 34 on Thursday with around 200 people injured.
RSS On Delhi Violence: Government Should Ensure Peace Is Restored (3:11 p.m.)
The government should ensure that peace is restored in Delhi, Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh’s General Secretary Suresh 'Bhaiyyaji' Joshi said in Nagpur today.
Nobody has the right to take law into their hands, he said. "The government should instil peace in areas where there is ashanti (unrest).”
Violence which broke out on Sunday in various parts of northeast Delhi over CAA has so far claimed 34 lives. Over 200 people have been injured in the clashes.
UN Chief 'Very Saddened' By Casualties In Delhi Violence (2:54 p.m.)
United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres is "very saddened" by casualties in the Delhi violence and calls for maximum restraint for violence to be avoided, said his spokesperson.
"He's (Guterres) is very saddened by the reports of casualties following the protests in Delhi, and as he has done in similar circumstances, he calls for maximum restraint and for violence to be avoided,” the secretary general’s spokesman Stephane Dujarric said.
Dujarric was responding to a question on whether Guterres has any comment on the riots in parts of Delhi over India’s new citizenship law and if he has communicated with the Indian government.
Solicitor General Tushar Mehta To Represent Delhi Police In Violence Cases (2:51 p.m.)
Delhi Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal has appointed Solicitor General Tushar Mehta and three others to represent the Delhi Police in court cases related to the law and order situation in northeast Delhi, where communal clashes have continued since Sunday over the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019.
According to an order issued by the home department, Additional Solicitor General Maninder Kaur Acharya, senior lawyers Amit Mahajan and Rajat Nair will also represent the Delhi Police in such cases.
The communal violence in northeast Delhi has claimed 34 lives so far.
CBSE To Conduct Fresh Exams For Those Affected By Delhi Violence (2:19 p.m.)
The Central Board of Secondary Education will conduct fresh exams for students who have not been able to appear for papers in other parts of the national capital due to the violence in northeast Delhi, officials said.
"The board has asked school principals to send details to regional offices concerned of the CBSE of all such students of class 10, 12 who have missed out on the exams so far in Delhi, due to these difficult conditions," CBSE Secretary Anurag Tripathi said.
"To reduce stress on students, the board will conduct fresh exams for these students. The next date of exam for affected students will be notified shortly,” he added.
The communal violence over CAA in northeast Delhi has claimed 34 lives so far and left over 200 people injured, latest data showed.
Pleas Seek FIRs Against Gandhi Family, Others, For Alleged Hate Speeches (2:00 p.m.)
Petitions were moved before the Delhi High Court today seeking FIRs against Congress President Sonia Gandhi, ex-president Rahul Gandhi, its general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra and others for alleged hate speeches.
One of the pleas has sought registration of FIR against Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia and Aam Aadmi Party leader Amanatullah Khan for allegedly making hate speeches.
The plea has also sought setting up of a Special Investigation Team to look into the alleged hate speeches.
Another plea, filed by Hindu Sena, alleged that hate speeches were given by All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen leaders Asaduddin Owaisi and Akbaruddin Owaisi.
The plea also alleged that inflammatory speeches were made by AIMIM MLA from Mumbai Waris Pathan and said that his speeches surcharged communal tension in Delhi which resulted in death of several people.
Pleas Challenge Kejriwal, Sisodia’s Election In Delhi High Court (1:53 p.m.)
Two petitions have been filed in the Delhi High Court challenging election of Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and his deputy Manish Sisodia for allegedly violating poll campaign norms in the recent concluded Delhi assembly elections.
Justice VK Rao issued notice to Sisodia, the Election Commission's Media Certification and Monitoring Committee and the returning officer seeking their stand on the plea moved by one of the candidates who lost against the Aam Aadmi Party leader.
In the matter pertaining to Kejriwal, Justice Mukta Gupta asked the petitioner to correct some typographical errors in the plea and no order was passed in it.
The petitioner, Pratap Chandra, has alleged that Kejriwal and Sisodia campaigned in the 48 hours prior to the date of polling, violating the model code of conduct. Chandra had contested against both the AAP leaders in the Delhi elections.
WATCH | Congress Urges President To Call For Amit Shah’s Resignation (1:24 p.m.)
A Congress delegation, including party chief Sonia Gandhi, has urged President Ram Nath Kovind to call for Home Minister Amit Shah's resignation over alleged "abdication of duty" during the communal violence in Delhi.
The delegation, including former prime minister Manmohan Singh, Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad, Ahmed Patel, P Chidambaram, K C Venugopal, Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, Anand Sharma and Randeep Surjewala, also submitted a memorandum to the president over the wave of violence in Delhi.
Congress Meets President Kovind Over Delhi Violence (12:46 p.m.)
A delegation of senior Congress leaders, led by party chief Sonia Gandhi, met President Ram Nath Kovind on Thursday to seek normalcy and peace in violence-hit Delhi.
The delegation, including Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad as well as Ahmed Patel and Randeep Surjewala, also submitted a memorandum to the president.
Death Toll In Ongoing Delhi Violence Rises To 34 (12:43 p.m.)
Seven more fatalities have been recorded at three hospitals, taking the total death toll in the northeast Delhi violence to 34 today, according to senior officials. Till last night, the death toll stood at 27, 25 of those at GTB Hospital in Dilshad Garden.
"Five more deaths recorded at GTB Hospital, and one more death at LNJP Hospital. One fatality was reported at Jag Pravesh Chandra Hospital on Thursday, taking the total death toll to 34," a senior official of the Delhi Health Department told PTI.
One person was declared brought dead by doctors, while another had died during treatment at the LNJP Hospital on Wednesday. Over 50 patients have been provided treatment at the LNJP Hospital since the violence broke out on Sunday in various parts of northeast Delhi, officials at the hospital said.
More than 200 people have been injured in the violence so far.
Delhi Violence: 13-Year-Old School Girl Missing Since Monday (12:38 p.m.)
A 13-year-old girl, who had gone to school to take an examination in the Khajuri Khas area three days ago, is missing amid the violence in northeast Delhi, police said.
The girl, a Class 8 student, lived with her parents in Sonia Vihar suburb and had gone to her school, some 4.5 km from their home, Monday morning but has not returned since, they said on Wednesday.
Her father, who deals in readymade garments, told Press Trust of India, "I was supposed to pick her up from school at 5:20 pm. But I got caught in the violence that unfolded in our area. My daughter is missing since then." A police officer said a "missing person" FIR has been registered and search was on to find the girl.
Another man, a resident of Vijay Park in Maujpur, said his family members, who were trapped in a house in Shiv Vihar for two days, were also unreachable since Tuesday night.
"I have one house in Shiv Vihar, near Medina mosque. Two of my children live there, two live here in Vijay Park with me. Due to the violence in the area, I could not reach them and have lost connection with them since last night," 70-year-old Mohammad Sabir said. "They had told me yesterday about mobs surrounding the house and they had managed to escape but I have no clue where they are now. The situation is tense in the area and my appeal to the police is to please help us.”
Comments By U.S. Commission An Attempt To Policise Issue: India (12:15 p.m.)
India today described the comments by a U.S. commission on religious freedom and by "few individuals" over violence in Delhi as "factually inaccurate, misleading" and an attempt to politicise the issue.
Ministry of External Affairs Spokesperson Raveesh Kumar's reaction came a day after the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) expressed "grave concern" over the violence in Delhi and asked the Indian government to provide protection to people irrespective of their faith.
“We have seen comments made by USCIRF, sections of the media and a few individuals regarding recent incidents of violence in Delhi. These are factually inaccurate and misleading, and appear to be aimed at politicising the issue," Kumar said.
Kumar said law enforcement agencies are working on the ground to prevent violence and ensure restoration of confidence and normalcy. "The prime minister has publicly appealed for peace and brotherhood. We would urge that irresponsible comments are not made at this sensitive time," he said.
Paramilitary Personnel Accompany Funeral Procession Of Victim (12:05 p.m.)
Amid an eerie calm in northeast Delhi's Shiv Vihar, where communal violence broke out four days ago, 26-year-old Rahul Solanki's body was taken to a crematorium by his distraught kin and armed paramilitary personnel.
Solanki, who was pursuing his law degree from a private college in Ghaziabad, had stepped out on Monday to buy milk. He died after he was shot in the right shoulder near his neck, his father Hari Singh Solanki said.
"We took his body home from GTB Hospital. We wanted police and paramilitary forces to give us protection till we reached the crematorium to perform his final rites," he said on Wednesday. Senior police officers present in the area had assured the family members that they will be provided security.
A friend of Rahul, who was with him when he was shot, said they could not see who fired at him. "We saw a mob approaching us and began to run. We were barefeet and Rahul went to put on his slippers. While he was putting them on, some unidentified persons shot him dead," he said.
Shops Shut, Eerie Calm In Riot-Hit Areas Of Delhi (11:53 a.m.)
Sporadic violence was reported from riot-hit areas of northeast Delhi, even as an eerie calm prevailed across Jaffrabad, Maujpur, Chandbagh, Gokulpuri and surrounding areas.
Most shops were closed with their shutters bearing marks of the violence witnessed over the last few days. Security officers conducted flag marches in the area, but people chose to stay indoors.
The Delhi Fire Service received 19 calls from midnight to 8:00 am today from the riot-hit areas, Director of Delhi Fire Service Atul Garg said. Over 100 firemen are deployed in the area and all the four fire stations in the area are provided with extra fire tenders to meet any emergency and are being managed by senior officers, he said. Senior officers are also camping in the riot-affected areas, he added.
The death toll in the ongoing Delhi riots increased to 32 today from 27 overnight.
Delhi High Court Judge Muralidhar Receives Transfer Order (11:35 a.m.)
Delhi High Court Judge Justice S Muralidhar, who was hearing the Delhi violence case, has been transferred to the Punjab and Haryana High Court, days after the Supreme Court made the recommendation.
The notification for the transfer came on a day when a Delhi High Court bench headed by him expressed "anguish" over Delhi Police's failure to register first investigation reports against alleged hate speeches by three BJP leaders.
A notification issued by the Ministry of Law and Justice states that President Ram Nath Kovind took the decision after consulting the Chief Justice of India. The notification, however, does not mention when he has to take the charge of his office.
Calling Judge Muralidhar's transfer a classic case of “hit-and-run injustice” by the BJP-led central government, senior Congress leader Randeep Surjewala said "It seems those doing justice in country will now not be spared", adding that the move exposes the saffron party’s "politics of revenge".
Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad, however, said the transfer came on the recommendation of the Supreme Court collegium, asserting that a "well-settled process" was followed.
"Transfer of Hon'ble Justice Muralidhar was done pursuant to the recommendation dated February 12 of the Supreme Court collegium headed by Chief Justice of India," Prasad wrote on Twitter. He said while transferring a judge, his or her consent is taken. "The well-settled process have been followed," Prasad added.
Delhi Violence: Sanders Terms Trump's Statement 'Failure Of Leadership' (11:15 a.m.)
A day after U.S. lawmakers reacted sharply to the violence in parts of Delhi, Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders in Washington accused President Donald Trump of failing on the issue of human rights.
Trump's statement regarding the violence in New Delhi during his India visit was a "failure of leadership", he said.
"Over 200 million Muslims call India home. Widespread anti-Muslim mob violence has killed at least 27 and injured many more. Trump responds by saying 'That's up to India'. This is a failure of leadership on human rights,” Sanders tweeted.
Trump, when asked for his take on the Delhi violence during his India visit, had said: "As far as the individual attacks, I heard about it, but I didn't discuss that with him (Modi). That's up to India."
He is the second Democratic presidential nominee after Senator Elizabeth Warren to speak against the violence over the Citizenship Amendment Act in New Delhi.
With inputs from Bloomberg and PTI.