Damaged cars, swollen limbs as Delhi’s Tughlaqabad residents fear return of agitators
While the police haven’t counted the number of damaged private vehicles, local residents pegged the figure at anywhere between 100 and 200.Updated: Aug 23, 2019 01:34 IST
The first thing Ranjan Singh, who works with a bank, did upon waking up on Thursday morning was to drive his Swift Dzire car to his relative’s home in Okhla. He plans to leave it parked there until he feels his DDA neighbourhood in south Delhi’s Tughlaqabad is safe.
Singh was luckier than scores of other car owners along a two kilometre stretch of the Guru Ravidas Marg where hundreds of protesters smashed the windshields and windows of cars with their sticks and rods on Wednesday evening.
On Thursday, the neighbourhoods along the Guru Ravidas Marg remained tense as paramilitary personnel continued to be deployed in dozens at the site where the protesters clashed with police on Wednesday. “The protests had been going on for many days and I fear that the agitators will return with more aggression. So, I have taken my precautions,” said Singh.
While the police haven’t counted the number of damaged private vehicles, local residents pegged the figure at anywhere between 100 and 200. “The miscreants who damaged these cars were protesters being chased by the police. They couldn’t take on the police, so they vent their anger on our vehicles,” said Rajkumar Bawa, a resident whose Santro was smashed on two sides.
On Thursday morning, the owners of most of those damaged cars flocked to authorised workshops and local motor mechanics to fix the damages. “I have been given an estimate of Rs. 18,000 to fix my damaged Honda City,” said Kiran Ahuja, a banker, who had failed to renew his insurance.
But the agitators, who had allegedly begun by clashing with the police, had not limited themselves to attacking just vehicles while escaping from police. “Two men repeatedly hit me on my back using sticks while fleeing,” said Akhtar Sheikh, a motorcycle mechanic.
Amal Maji, an auto-rickshaw driver, didn’t go to work on Thursday as he was yet to recover from a swollen leg, the injury allegedly inflicted by the protesters.