Prayagraj demolition: Records show wife of activist is owner, paid water bill & tax

* The receipt issued by Jal Kal Vibhaj, Prayagraj, dated 8 February and states that Parveen Fatima paid a water bill of Rs 4,578.

*Certificate dated 28th Jan and issued by Prayagraj Nagar Nigam shows that house No. 39C/2A/1 is in the name of Parveen Fatima and that house tax has been paid for fiscal year 2020-2021.

However, the Prayagraj management demolished the house on Sunday after serving only a day’s notice, saying the construction had been in violation of the provisions of the Uttar Pradesh Urban Planning and Development Act, 1973.

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The notice, along with the house number mentioned, was not addressed to Parveen Fatimah but to her husband Muhammad Javed, the activist and businessman who was arrested on Saturday on charges of inciting violent protests against the insulting statements of the Prophet.

Speaking to The Indian Express, Somaya Fatima and Fatima’s youngest daughter said: “The PDA (Prayagraj Development Authority) issued a notice to my father and demolished my mother’s house. The house was owned by my mother Parvin Fatima Kalimuddin Siddiqui. He gifted it to my mother over two decades ago. Initially, We built the ground floor, and then we built two more floors.”

Somaya, 19, said: “Since then, no government agency has told us that it was built illegally. House tax, water tax and electricity connections are in my mother’s name. All taxes were paid on time. Before Sunday, no official told us that our house was built incorrectly.”

The notice affixed to the house’s gate reads: “The building was 25 by 60 feet without permission on the ground and first floors.”

On Sunday, attorney KK Roy, who represents Javid’s family, told the Indian Express: “The house demolished on Sunday is in the name of Parveen Fatimah, Muhammad Javid’s wife; a notice on Saturday has been sent to Javed Muhammad. According to Islamic law, the wife’s property is not the property of the wife. for the husband.”

When contacted to respond to the alleged discrepancies, PDA Secretary Ajit Singh and District Officer Ajay Kumar declined to comment. District Judge Sanjay Kumar Khatri could not be reached for comment.

A senior PDA official said, on condition of anonymity: “We issue a notice to the person doing the construction on the land after collecting details from local residents. We have nothing to do with the ownership of the land.”

Asked about Javid’s case specifically, the official said, “There was a stone plaque on the border wall that read ‘Javed M’. The locals told us that the house belonged to Muhammad Javid, and accordingly, a notice was sent to him.”

On Monday, The Indian Express visited the site and found a wooden table and some chairs set in an open plot nearby. There was a constant stream of people from the vicinity to see the rubble left by the bulldozer even though the doors of most of the neighboring houses were closed.

According to Somaya, she is now staying with her mother at a relative’s house in Roshan Bagh.

“On Sunday, when the PDA team arrived at the house to demolish it, my sister-in-law Zeinat Masroor was present there. With the help of some relatives, I was able to remove some things from the house. The bulldozer ran over everything that it failed to remove,” Somaya said.

Masroor, the wife of Somaya’s older brother, said she returned to her parents’ home in the neighborhood with her two minor children. Sumaya’s older sister Afrin is an activist and a former student at the National Unity University.

According to Sumaya, the police “broke” her father in the case and “falsely” claimed that they had recovered weapons and other items from the house. The police denied the allegations.

The demolition took place in the presence of District Judge Khatri and SSP Ajay Kumar.

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