The Supreme Court on Wednesday will hear a plea filed by the Islamic organisation Jamiat Ulama-i-Hind seeking directions to the Uttar Pradesh government to ensure that no illegal demolitions take place in the state, PTI reported.

A vacation bench of Justices Surya Kant and JB Pardiwala will hear the petitions filed by the Muslim body.

Earlier this month, civic administrations in Uttar Pradesh had razed the houses of those who allegedly protested against disparaging remarks made by two Bharatiya Janata Party spokespersons about Prophet Muhammad.

It included the house of activist Javed Mohammed in Prayagraj. He was arrested for allegedly conspiring to carry out violent protests in the city to oppose the remarks about Prophet. The Prayagraj Development Authority claimed it had given Mohammed a notice on May 10 about the illegal construction. However, Mohammed’s family denied receiving any communication.

On June 22, the Uttar Pradesh government told the Supreme Court that the demolitions in Kanpur and Prayagraj were carried out strictly in accordance with municipal laws.

In an affidavit, the Adityanath led-government told the Supreme Court that the Jamiat Ulama-i-Hind deliberately picked out the demolition of alleged illegal properties belonging to two persons named Ishtiaq Ahmed and Riyaz Ahmed in Kanpur and falsely linked them to cases regarding the violence.

The Kanpur Development Authority had initiated proceedings against the two buildings much before the rioting, the government alleged.

“The petitioner has deliberately obfuscated the true facts to paint a nefarious picture of alleged mala fides on the part of the administration, and that too, without stating any facts on affidavit,” the Uttar Pradesh government said. “Notice had been issued on 10 May 2022, and demolition order passed on 10 June after the owner failed to appear or respond to show cause notice,” it said.

On June 22, the Jamiat-Ulama-I-Hind told the Supreme Court that it needs more time to reply to the Uttar Pradesh government’s affidavit, according to PTI.

The court had then adjourned the matter till June 29.

Meanwhile, in contrast to the affidavit by the Uttar Pradesh government, political leaders and police officials in the state have repeatedly linked the demolition of alleged illegal properties with violence in the state.

On June 11, state BJP chief Swatantra Dev Singh had supported calls for demolishing houses of persons accused of instigating violence saying, “those whose homes are in the shadow of bulldozers do not throw stones at others”.

On June 4, Additional Director General of Police (Law and Order) Prashant Kumar had said that illegal properties of those who engaged in violence in Kanpur would be demolished.

While there are no provisions under Indian law to demolish the home of anyone accused of a crime, this pattern has been regularly observed across BJP-ruled states.