Dec 17, 2013 at 09:06am IST
Muzaffarnagar: Thirty children living in the Muzaffarnagar relief camps have died due to the cold and what is worse is that the Uttar Pradesh government continues to deny that anything happened. Three months after the riots, the victims are still languishing in the relief camps.
While the Supreme Court took suo motu cognizance of the loss of lives in Shamli camps, CNN-IBN has accessed the report sent to the state home secretary claiming that there were no deaths.
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First the people were attacked and then they were uprooted and discarded by the administration. But even as the Supreme Court took cognizance, the Shamli administration report accessed by CNN-IBN in fact claimed no child died or was seriously ill in the Muzaffarnagar relief camps. It was only after the SC intervened that the Meerut Divisional Commissioner took stock of the situation and restored the supply of milk.
“They asked for milk, we will provide them. We are looking at their relocation as well,” said Meerut DC Manjit Singh.
CNN-IBN camped a night in Malakpur, which has lost 30 people to the cold and the condition there wasn’t encouraging at all. At 11 pm, the dew was setting in at a hutment where children have lost lives.
“Neither have they got any government help nor are there any medical facilities around,” said a riot victim Gulshaad.
In the Biwipur camp, CNN-IBN found an old couple literally clutching at straws. In some places, children refuse to go inside their tent fearing the dew and instead they were staying awake by the fire.
A man was suffering from pneumonia but there was no dry place for him to spend the night. “I feel really cold. See, my clothes are getting damp,” he said.
CNN-IBN witnessed how doctors had given up on a baby who had been ill for over a month and now her parents said they had no money left to treat her. But even then, they don’t want to go back to their villages.
In the morning, the tents were wet from the dew. The people now have a cold bitter winter ahead of them and the administration is only brushing of its responsibility.
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