Three Years on, Muzaffarnagar Riots Survivors Await Rehabilitation, Justice
Muzaffarnagar: The survivors of the 2013 Muzaffarnagar riots are far from being rehabilitated and their condition seems to have only worsened over time. Jamait Colony in Kairana village is home to almost 300 families who have been hit on multiple occasions.
Having lost their loved ones in the riots and forced to migrate in the aftermath, the families are now living under deplorable conditions in camps.
Their misery can be gauged from the fact that almost half of them are still living in tents without water and electricity for close to three years.
The administration's apathy towards riot victims runs deep into these camps. Physically handicapped Feroz Khan, 35, hasn't received the meagre Rs 1800 per annum handicap aid from Muzaffarnagar administration.
His differently abled wife delivered a child in the camp and his miseries are just mounting.
"Jo paanchvi din ki bachchi hai hamari, Itni dikkat uthani padti hai. raat me roti hai garmi ki wajah se. Uski maa puri puri raat pankha karti rehti hai. Hum bhi so nahi paate.(The 5-days-old infant cries relentlessly due to severe heat. Her mother keeps fanning her for entire night. No body is able to sleep)," laments Feroz.
For a 45-year-old widow who was allegedly gang-raped by five rioters from her neighbourhood, the present day reality is only rubbing salt on her old wounds. With eight children to take care of, she now works as a labourer.
With all the accused out on bail, she lamented that while politicians benefited from the riots, victims like her haven't been able to move on
"Ab toh lagta hai insaaf ho jaaye bas (Hope justice is delivered)," she says.
However, in stark contrast, there are now reports of large scale migration of Hindus in Kairana village itself who allege they were targeted by goons from another community.
"We are facing problem due to them. They strip themselves in front of us when they see us in the fields," says Pinky, a resident of Kairana.
BJP MP from Shamli's Kairana Hukum Singh calls it a systematic attack against Hindus, likening the situation to the migration of Pandits from Kashmir Valley in the early 1990s
"Jaise Srinagar ke pandito ko ghar chhodne ke liye majbur kiya gaya waise hi Kairane me majbur kiya gaya (Like Kashmiri Pandits, residents of Kairana have been forced to flee)," he says.