The Delhi Development Authority on Wednesday demolished the house of a member of the team that played a crucial role in rescuing the 41 workers trapped inside a tunnel in Uttarakhand last year, reported The Hindu.

The home of the rescue worker, Vakeel Hasan, was demolished because it was part of an encroachment in the village Khajuri Khas in northeast Delhi, the authority said. The land was part of planned development land, the DDA officials said.

However, Hasan said that he and his family were rendered homeless as the authorities provided no prior notice, he told the newspaper. The miner also said that his home, which was built in 2012-’13, was in a regularised colony.

“My wife and I were not at home; DDA officials came, and only my three children were present,” he told The Hindu. “The children were scared and were even hassled by officials while the demolition was ongoing.”

Hasan also said that when he arrived at his home, he was taken to the nearby police station, and they took away his phone.

He told India Today: “This is how we have been rewarded for rescuing so many people – we have been rendered homeless.”

Northeast Delhi MP Manoj Tiwari said he has looked into the matter and will ensure that Hasan gets the benefit of the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana, the Union government’s affordable housing scheme.

Hasan was among 12 rat-hole mining experts employed by Delhi-based Rockwell Enterprises who manually drilled through the debris in the partially collapsed Silkyara-Barkot tunnel to rescue 41 trapped workers in November.

Rat-hole mining is a primitive coal extraction method involving digging small tunnels through soil and other debris.

The miners went through an 800-millimetre pipe, drilled manually and removed the debris using shovels.

To felicitate the miners, Uttarakhand Chief Minister Pushkar Singh Dhami offered each of the 12 miners cheques of Rs 50,000 and shawls. However, at the time Hasan had said that the rescued workers were given Rs 1 lakh while the miners who put their lives at risk were only given half of that amount.