4 years on, Muzaffarnagar victims await compensation: Amnesty

4 years on, Muzaffarnagar victims await compensation: Amnesty
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NEW DELHI: Driven out of their villages and forced to live in squalid conditions, around 200 families affected in the Muzaffarnagar riots of 2013 are yet to receive the promised compensation of Rs 50,000, an Amnesty International report has said.
The report, released here today, documents the “broken promises” made to the families belonging to villages in western Uttar Pradesh’s Muzaffarnagar and Shamli, which were torn asunder by communal violence. The riots had left at least 60 dead.
The Uttar Pradesh government had promised to extend an assistance of Rs 50,000 to the families from nine ‘worst- affected’ villages of these two districts. Amnesty, with Shamli-based NGO AKFAR India, surveyed these families between August 2016 and April 2017.
“According to government records, 980 families in Muzaffarnagar and 820 families in Shamli have received compensation so far from the nine identified villages.
However, about 200 families from these villages are still waiting to receive relocation compensation.
“In several cases, authorities have inconsistently applied their definition of a family to deny compensation. In others, families have had to face clerical errors and corruption. Many of these families live in horrific conditions in so-called relief colonies, with little access to water, sanitation, electricity and adequate housing,” the report said.
Over 50,000 people were displaced in the violence.
The special investigative team, probing the riots, has completed its probe in all but one case, with charge sheets being filed in 175 out of 511 cases, an official said recently.
A total of 1,478 people were arrested in connection with the riots. Most of the accused had got bail.
“These families were forced to leave their homes and everything they owned during the 2013 violence. But successive governments in Uttar Pradesh have failed them,” Asmita Basu, Programmes Director at Amnesty International India, said.

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