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Aug 06, 2013 at 01:08pm IST

After intelligence report, UP Waqf Board backs IAS officer Durga

Lucknow/ New Delhi: The Samajwadi Party seems to be tying itself up in knots over the suspension of IAS officer Durga Shakti Nagpal for allegedly demolishing the wall of a mosque in a village of Gautam Budh Nagar district. First an intelligence report accessed by CNN-IBN vindicated IAS officer Durga Shakti Nagpal and now the Uttar Pradesh Waqf Board, too, has given her a clean chit.

The Waqf Board says Durga Shakti Nagpal was trying to reclaim Waqf land, which angered the sand mining mafia active in the area. According to a letter addressed by the Waqf Board to Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav copies of which have also been sent to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde and Gautam Budh Nagar District Magistrate Kumar Ravikant Singh, the IAS officer did not order the demolition of the mosque wall as claimed by the state government

A team of the committee connected to the Waqf Board visited Kadalpur, the village where the wall was demolished, after the incident and it has now said that Durga Shakti Nagpal had no role in bringing down the wall. The report of the committee in fact praises Durga for beginning the process of reclaiming Waqf Board land which was allegedly encroached upon by the sand mining and land mafia.

"I am going to submit memorandum to the Prime Minister through the District Magistrate to reinstate Durga. She was only doing her duty and become a victim not only of sand mafia but also land mafia which has occupied Waqf land in the area. The Samajwadi Party is trying to make it political by saying demolition would have let to communal riots but it is a Muslim majority village so there is no question of riots," said Kadir Khan, Secretary of the Hazrat Syed Bhureshah Committee, which is connected to the Waqf Board.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), too, targeted the Samajwadi Party government for the controversy. "Durga Shakti Nagpal is facing punishment without any fault of hers. All the reports, including those of the DM, Muslim & minority organisations, reflect only on the failure of the Samajwadi Party government," said BJP spokesperson Syed Shahnawaz Hussain.

Earlier, a Local Intelligence Unit (LIU) report sent to the Uttar Pradesh government said that the wall of an under-construction mosque was demolished in the presence of Circle officer/SDM Jewar and that the suspended IAS officer was not present at the spot.

Durga Shakti Nagpal, the 28-year-old SDM of Gautam Budh Nagar, who led the crackdown on sand mining mafia in her district, was suspended on July 27 ostensibly for ordering the demolition of the wall allegedly without following the due process.

As per the LIU report, which did not state name of any officer, SDM (Jewar) was present at the spot and not SDM (Sadar), the post held by Nagpal. Both Jewar and Sadar fall under Gautam Budh Nagar. The District Magistrate, GB Nagar has already stated in his report to the state government that Nagpal had not got the wall of any religious place demolished.

The report said that on July 27 members of the Muslim community were getting a new mosque constructed in Kadalpur village in Raghupura area of Gautam Budh Nagar. "The SDM (Jewar) alongwith Circle officer and SHO, Raghupura team reached the village at about 1 pm and got the wall, which is of about 10 feet height and constructed from three sides, demolished", the LIU report said.

"The administration is saying that the action has been taken as no permission has been sought for construction of the mosque", the report said. Jewar (GB Nagar) Bachhu Singh said that the said village does not lie in his area. "I dont know how the report mentioned presence of SDM, Jewar) at the spot," Singh said.

The LIU had sent its report to the DIG, Intelligence and it was forwarded to DGP and Home department at about 5.10 pm on July 27 itself apprising them of the real situation in the village. On the same day, Nagpal was suspended by the Akhilesh Yadav government citing her lack of foresightedness in demolishing the wall of the religious place.

"The villagers are holding a panchayat to decide their future course of action due to which police arrangement appears necessary in the village", the report added. Opposition parties have alleged that Nagpal was suspended following pressure from the sand mining mafia.