Azad Maidan is officially ‘disturbed’ now

Due

Aug 11 riot Notification of area will expedite compensation recovery.

The process of recovering compensation of around Rs 2.75 crore from organisers of a rally at Azad Maidan that turned riotous in August last year has now gained momentum. The collector's office has now notified the area in and around the ground as 'disturbed'.

On Wednesday, Chandrashekhar V Oak, collector of Mumbai City, issued the disturbed area notification under Section 51 (1) of the Bombay Police Act. A deputy collector has also been assigned the task of fixing the responsibility for the damage to public and private property, as well as the quantum of compensation to be paid. "The disturbed area notification has been issued so that the process of recovering compensation can be carried out," Oak said.

"Deputy collector B G Gavande has been assigned the task of probing the matter. He will begin issuing notices to the parties concerned and recover the compensation due. In case they fail to pay up, further legal measures will be taken," said Oak.

According to the Mumbai police, OB vans of three TV channels, two police vans and five vehicles were set ablaze during the August 11 violence. Rioters also pelted stones at 24 BEST buses. Fifteen police vehicles, eight private ones and a vehicle each of the fire brigade and BMC were damaged, a remand application filed before a court on August 12 stated. The damage to property has been pegged at Rs 2.75 crore, of which property worth Rs. 36.45 lakh belonged to government and the rest was private.

The crime branch had said Maulana Ahmed Raza, the organiser of the protest, would have to pay for the damages as it was he who had officially sought police permission for the protest against alleged atrocities on Muslims in Assam and Myanmar. Raza, general secretary of NGO Madinatul Ilm, held around six meetings urging various groups to join the protest, ignoring his own estimate to the police that the rally would attract only around 1,200 people, crime branch said.

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