New Delhi: Protests erupted in Shaheen Bagh in New Delhi ahead of an anti-encroachment drive on Monday as hundreds of people including women started dharna in the area as soon as municipal officials reached the spot with bulldozers.

Protesters raised slogans against the BJP-ruled South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC) as well as the central government, and demanded to stop the action.

Shaheen Bagh that falls under the central zone of SDMC was the centre of protests and sit-ins against Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA) in December 2019. The sit-in was called off in March 2020 when the COVID-19 pandemic had struck the city.

Our teams with bulldozers, trucks and police force have reached Shaheen Bagh to remove illegal encroachments there. Removal of encroachment is our obligatory function which we are carrying out, SDMC’s Central Zone chairman Rajpal Singh told PTI.

Senior police officials were also present at the spot along with their personnel to provide security to SDMC officials carrying out the anti-encroachment drive in the area.

“Police personnel have been deployed at the spot where the anti-encroachment drive is being carried out. This is being done to ensure that the civic bodies concerned can carry out their work without any hassle and with all safety,” a senior police official said.

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