Delhi City tense after Hindu-Muslim clashes leave 27 dead

Delhi remains on edge after three nights of rioting, with reports of Muslim homes and shops being targeted by violent mobs.

Twenty-seven people have been killed so far in the deadliest violence the Indian capital has seen in decades.

The clashes first broke out on Sunday between protesters for and against a controversial citizenship law.

But they have since taken on communal overtones, with reports of many Muslims being attacked.

Photographs, videos and accounts on social media paint a chilling image of the last few days – of mostly Hindu mobs beating unarmed men, including journalists; of groups of men with sticks, iron rods and stones wandering the streets; and of Hindus and Muslims facing off.

Access to these areas was severely restricted on Tuesday, when most of the violence took place. Judging by the names released so far, both Muslims and Hindus are among the dead and injured.

The Delhi High Court, which is hearing petitions about the violence, has said it cannot let “another 1984” happen on its “watch”. In 1984, more than 3,000 Sikhs were killed in anti-Sikh riots in the city.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted on Wednesday, three days after the violence broke out, appealing for peace. He added that he had reviewed the situation and police were working to restore normality.

Opposition leader Sonia Gandhi has called for the resignation of Home Minister Amit Shah, saying he is “responsible” for the violence.

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has described the situation as “alarming” and demanded for the army to be called in.

The unrest is centred around Muslim-majority neighbourhoods – such as Maujpur, Mustafabad, Jaffrabad and Shiv Vihar – in north-east Delhi.

The streets in these areas are littered with stones and shattered glass. Broken and burnt vehicles are strewn about, and the stench of smoke from smouldering buildings fills the air. (BBC News)

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