Gujarat govt denies riot victims compensation: Report

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New Delhi, Sep 7 (UNI) Antarik Visthapit Hak Rakshak Samiti&ANHAD accused the Gujarat government today of denying constitutional rights to victims of the 2002 riots in the state.

Addressing mediapersons here, AVHRS coordinator Yusuf shaikh alleged, "the Gujarat government continues to discriminate against the riot victims. Six long years have since passed. Yet many have not got either compensation or even claims to it." He liberally quoted the findings of a report released at the meeting to buttress the allegations.

"115-pages report bears testimony to the institutional prejudices running deeper almost every day," according to him. The report, 'The wretched a profile,' is a document on the socio-economic conditions of the internally displaced within the state in the wake of the communal pogrom.

Economic boycott of the Muslims in the state has turned many farmers into unskilled labourers, the report mentions. Even within an occupational group, the Muslims are the least preferred, the report further mentioned and indicated RSS Guru Golwalkar's dream of pushing the minorities to a second class citizenship.

"Even the Union Government has been of little help," Yusuf Shaikh said. " We have been urging the Centre to make an NGO, part of the body which supervises relief and rehabilitation. They are free to choose and pick any NGO of their choice. But they won't listen. It smacks of apathy, if not prejudice. In fact, it led to birth of AVHRS in February 2007," he added.

However, all is not yet lost. The silver linings however blurred, have appeared. About 36 per cent of the riot victims expressed hope to get justice, the report mentioned. Besides, 18.6 and 19.2 per cent of the victims said they were helped by Hindu and Muslim neighbours, respectively according to the report.

The report is based on 4182 interviews of riots victims, representing one family each of eight districts to make the findings closest to the truth.

UNI SSS KK HT1855

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