High drama ensued in the House meeting of the North Corporation on Monday when the majority BJP started demanding the demolition of the ‘illegal’ structure built by MLA Shoaib Iqbal at Subhash Park, which he has claimed is the site of a 17th century mosque.
The demand came after Commissioner PK Gupta’s report that despite urging Iqbal not to carry out construction at the site, he and other locals, encroached upon the corporation’s land and started the ‘restoration’ work.
“Historical remains were unearthed from the site near Jama Masjid as claimed by MLA Shoaib Iqbal to be part of the 17th Century Akbarabadi mosque. He was asked by the corporation authorities not to carry out construction or rituals at the site till a proper decision was taken by the appropriate authority,” said the report.Gupta then told the House that yet the site was encroached upon and illegal construction was carried out on the site that will now have to be handed over to the ASI.
“The ASI, however, is yet to take possession,” he said amidst sloganeering from the Congress councillors who were trying to hush up the matter as it involved their MLA.
Standing Committee chairman Yogender Chandolia then asked the commissioner to place the facts before the court on Wednesday and get the illegally constructed parts of the structure demolished. His comments led to further sloganeering.
Sparked by the furore over the alleged mosque in the last one week, the Lieutenant Governor also held a meeting of the Mayor North Corporation, Police Commissioner, DG (ASI), Chief Secretary and Minister Haroon Yusuf on Monday morning. Mayor Meera Aggarwal later told reporters that all stakeholders have agreed to wait for the court’s decision, whose hearing is due on Wednesday.