‘Violent, hate-filled’ atmosphere in Uttarakhand: Civil society members write to Prez

The letter criticises Uttarakhand chief minister Pushkar Singh Dhami's claim that the state is facing "land jihad."

Over 200 organisations and individuals have written to President Droupadi Murmu, asking for immediate action to protect the lives of people as communal tensions flared up in Uttarakhand in the last few weeks.

Earlier, locals foiled the attempt of two men to ‘abduct’ a minor girl, one of who was a Muslim, pushing the state towards a communal boiling point. After the incident, threatening posters appeared on shops owned by Muslim traders in Uttarakhand’s Purola town, calling for an exodus.

The state government has taken no steps to curb the escalating tensions in the state, the letter reads, according to a report by The Hindu.

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The letter also asked the President to direct the government and administration to follow the rule of law, thereby taking action against hate speech and campaigns. “This type of violent, hate-filled atmosphere has never existed in the state of Uttarakhand,” the members of the civil society said in the letter.

A Times of India report said that the letter criticises Uttarakhand chief minister Pushkar Singh Dhami’s claim that the state is facing “land jihad.” This is against the constitution, the letter said.

The letter also condemned the formation of committees in every district on the basis of this communal claim. This led to the demolition of many historical Sufi shrines without any legal processes.

The letter called for an investigation into illegal demolitions carried out by the Uttarakhand government and demanded the rebuilding of demolished religious structures and homes. The letter asked for strict action against officials involved in the demolitions.

The letter wanted all Forest Rights Act provisions to be implemented in the state’s villages, according to the report. “The ongoing hate-filled efforts will only harm our country,” the letter added.

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