26 February 2020
New Delhi: Some of the survivors of some of the deadliest violence in the national capital in decades, which claimed 23 lives while leaving more than 200 injured, shared their ordeal with IANS.
Lala, Deepak and Anup Singh all residents of Moonga Nagar in Chand Bagh area were attacked by angry mobs, and all three of them have different tales of their survival.
Sharing his experience, Anup Singh (21), who received a bullet injury in his neck on Tuesday evening, said: "More than 300 people were pelting stones and throwing petrol bombs. At around 5 p.m., I went to see why people were pelting stones. Suddenly, something hit my neck and blood started to come out profusely. As I was on my way back to home after being hit, an elderly person of the locality put a bandage on my neck and told me that I was hit by a bullet."
Residing with his sister after the death of his father and mother, Singh said: "I was admitted to a private hospital by my family members."
"Due to the violence, there were no taxis, auto rickshaws or ambulance service in the area, therefore, I was taken to the hospital on a bike," said Singh.
Singh has now been discharged from the hospital and with bandages over his neck feels lucky that the bullet didn't slice through a nerve.
Lala and Deepak, both friends and drivers by profession, said they were beaten mercilessly by an angry mob in the Bhajanpura area on Sunday.
Speaking to IANS, Lala said: "I and Deepak were at Bharat Dairy near Bhajanpura when we suddenly heard people shouting and running. We panicked and started to run but were surrounded by over 200 people, who started beating us."
Interrupting Lala, Deepak said: "In order to save ourselves, we stopped breathing and acted as if we were dead."
"The mob then left us as they thought we were dead," both said in unison.
Both had bruise marks on their bodies and even their eyes had swollen up as they said that they were beaten with rods and sticks. Lala got over five stitches on his head.
Talking about the presence of police, Lala said: "The police was standing almost 200 meters away from the spot but they didn't bother to save us."
The violence which erupted in northeast Delhi on Sunday is the worst since at least 1992, when there were nationwide riots following the demolition of the Babri mosque in Ayodhya, and possibly since the anti-Sikh riots of 1984 after the assassination of then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi.
The clashes broke out after groups favouring the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) clashed with the groups protesting against it.
In the last three days hundreds of vehicles, shops and homes were burnt.
The streets of Chand Bagh and Bhajanpura on Wednesday wore a deserted look with people peeping outside from the windows of their homes and heavy deployment of police and para military forces.
Bricks and stones littering the streets, shattered glasses, burnt homes, offices, showrooms and vehicles clearly indicated the intensity of the violence.
Earlier in the day, the body of an Intelligence Bureau staffer was pulled out from a drain in Chand Bagh. The officer has been identified as Ankit Sharma.