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Gujarat Govt Demolishes 108 Mazars In Crackdown On Encroachments As ‘Part Of Conspiracy’

The Bhupendra Patel-led government has demolished 108 Mazars in its campaign against encroachments that have surfaced as “part of a conspiracy,” Gujarat HM Harsh Sanghavi told the Assembly on Wednesday. Sanghavi also gave the people confidence that the government is keeping an eye out for any malevolent purpose when it comes to temple protection.

Referring to an earlier speech by a BJP MLA from Ellisbridge, Sanghavi said, “Today, the point mentioned by Amitbhai… He said that a derasar was removed in Jamalpur. Now, Dada’s (Bhupendra Patel) bulldozer is moving around in every nook and corner of the state so that no temple or devsthan can be removed while hatching a conspiracy. Nobody knows where will it (bulldozer) go.”

While addressing the Assembly, Sanghavi was requesting approval from the House for the home department’s budgetary allotment.

He expressed concerns over the unexpected emergence of several mazars on the freshly renovated Uparkot Fort property in Junagadh.

“In Uparkot, it was not known where (and when) all mazars were built. How can it be built suddenly?”

Sanghavi added, “In all, 108 mazars have been demolished (in the state) and the state’s properties have been opened… The encroachment around Somnath has been removed. This bulldozer of Dada can enter a 20-ft wide street and an 80-m wide road.”

In addition, the minister responded to criticism on the late-night Navratri celebrations. Citing a recent PIL filed in the high court, he bemoaned the opposition to the late-night garba performances and defended the cultural activities that are fundamental to the identity of the state.

“Navratri was allowed (to be celebrated) the whole night so that the people of Gujarat could worship the goddess and play raas throughout the night. Considering the Supreme Court and (Gujarat) high court and its fear, we definitely got the sound (of music) decreased.”

“But because Navratri could be allowed till late night, it brought Diwali to numerous households. To get a figure of that (how many households), one needs to ask the poor, the vendors and those running small restaurants,” he added.

“I made a statement (then) that if the people of my state cannot perform garba then would they do so in Pakistan? The very next day of this statement, people from a party (moved) a PIL in the HC. They have a problem if people of the state perform garba till late in the night. Can’t people perform garba till late? We had to face that situation,” the minister said.

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