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Delhi: Railways issues ‘removal of encroachment’ notices to two centuries-old mosques

New Delhi: The Railways has issued notices to two centuries-old mosques in the national capital, asking them to ‘remove the encroachments from its land’. The two mosques — Masjid Bengali Market and Taqia Babar Shah mosque — are approximately 250 years and 500 years old respectively.


Officials said that the notices have been issued to the administration of two mosques for ‘encroaching on railway land’. The mosque administrations have been given 15 days time to remove the structures, failing which the Railways will take action.

After the news went viral on social media, a railway official said that the two structures against which the Northern Railways (NR) has initiated action are both built on Railways’ land.

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The two mosques are situated on the main route between New Delhi and Ghaziabad. The notice pasted on mosques reads: “Railway property has been illegally encroached upon. You must voluntarily dismantle any unlicensed structures, including temples, mosques or shrines within 15 days of receiving this notice or the railway administration will take legal action.”

“Encroachments that are not permitted will be removed in compliance with the Railways Act. Any damages incurred throughout the procedure will be your responsibility. The Railway administration won’t be held accountable,” it added.

According to officials, the process of removing encroachments begins with issuing notices to the encroachers and giving them proper time (generally up to 15 days ) to remove the encroachments themselves. But even after the notice is served and yet the encroachments are not removed, then the Railways forms a task force to remove the encroachments.

Officials also said that it is a general practice for the Railways to issue notices to encroachers whenever they come to the attention of the authorities.

NR CPRO Deepak Kumar said that the encroachments can pose a safety hazard to railway employees and passengers, and they can also damage railway property.

“The NR is committed to ensuring that railway land is used for its intended purpose, and the removal of encroachments is an important part of this commitment,” Kumar added.

(With inputs form agencies)

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