In Pics: The Ravages of Delhi’s Worst Communal Violence in Decades

A new violent chapter in New Delhi’s history unfolded between Sunday, 23 February and Wednesday, 26 February. Over a dozen densely populated localities from Jaffrabad to Karawal Nagar in northeast Delhi witnessed bloody communal clashes which has claimed 32 lives and injured over 150 till Thursday evening.

As the smell of burnt tires hung heavy in the air, on the ground this wave of communal violence was characterised by charred buildings, deserted streets and residents counting their losses.

Reporters of The Quint who have been on the ground share curated images to illustrate the scale and depth of loss.

A burning vehicle marks the threshold between Anti & pro-CAA protestors on 23 February

MAUJPUR - JAFFRABAD | epicentre of violence between Maujpur and Jaffrabad on 24 February. With the anti-CAA protesters on the side of Jaffrabad and the pro-CAA protesters from the side of Maujpur. This burning car in the middle demarcated the two sides with the heavy police presence only on the side of Maujpur.

Chand Masjid in Ashok Nagar set ablaze on 24 February

ASHOK VIHAR | This is an image of Chand masjid in Ashok Nagar from 26 February. Away from of the spotlight, this was another mosque that was torched. While the video of vandals planting a saffron flag atop Badi Masjid went viral, this mosque, about half a kilometer away was attacked and gutted in a similar manner.

Also Read: Delhi Violence: Not One But Two Mosques Vandalised in Ashok Nagar

An abandoned exercise notebook in Bhajanpura on 27 February

BHAJANPURA | An exercise copy lies abandoned on a street which saw fresh violence on Thursday, 27 February.

Dogs of Chand Bagh making their way through the charred remains of their neighbourhood

CHAND BAGH | On Wednesday, 26 February, a day after intense communal violence left Chand Bagh in tatters, two dogs were spotted wandering through the charred shops and vandalised streets, rummaging for food. Residents of the area said the dogs have lived on the street all their life.

A gutted garage in Shiv Vihar

SHIV VIHAR | A garage in Shiv Vihar’s Tiraha Area was burnt down on 25 February by a masked and armed mob. The perpetrators of the destruction are yet to be identified or apprehended.

A resident of Ashok Nagar looks for his belongings inside his vandalised house in Ashok Nagar on 26 February

ASHOK NAGAR | Behind Badi Masjid, where a saffron flag was planted on 25 February, are four Muslim homes. Each was vandalised, its electricity cut off and robbed. Islamuddin, a resident of one of the attacked houses, looks for his belongings with the help of the backlight on his cellphone.

Paramilitary forces march through violence hit Bhagirathi Vihar

BHAGIRATHI VIHAR | Over 50 vehicles, shops and houses were burnt down in the locality as part of the ongoing violence in northeast Delhi. The Quint visited the affected area and spoke to the people. Section 144 has been imposed in Bhagirathi Vihar in Gokulpuri and paramilitary forces deployed.

Also Read: Muslim Homes in Bhagirathi Vihar Targeted, Over 50 Vehicles Burnt

Akbar, a meat shop owner in Ashok Nagar, breaks down while recounting the horror.

ASHOK NAGAR | Akbar, who owns a meat shop next to Chand Masjid, breaks down while describing the losses suffered from the loot and vandalism of the shop on 25 February. His neighbours consoled him saying, “we are all with you”.

A boy places the national flag on the charred remains of a vehicle in Bhajanpura

BHAJANPURA | A young resident of Bhajanpura places the national flag on a charred vehicle in a petrol pump that was completely gutted.

Residents survey the damage to their neighbourhood in Chand Bagh

CHAND BAGH | A motorbike showroom was burnt to the ground in a locality close to Chand Bagh. A day after the violence, the area saw heavy police deployment. That area didn’t look like anything short of war zone. “However, as I moved ahead towards Karawal Nagar, strangely there was no police presence and no vehicle was plying on the road. All I could see was burnt vehicles and stones on the road,” the reporter said.

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