Tales of communal amity from riot-hit Muzaffarnagar

Amid harrowing details of communal violence in rural areas of the district, several tales of amity have also come to the fore with people giving shelter and entrusting their belongings to those hailing from other communities.

Muzaffarnagar: Amid harrowing details of communal violence in rural areas of the district, several tales of amity have also come to the fore with people giving shelter and entrusting their belongings to those hailing from other communities.

In several villages, people of the majority community gave shelter to people who had fled their homes out of fear.

In certain cases, people of the minority community have entrusted their belongings and cattle to majority community members before fleeing their homes.

Mohammad Dilshad, a daily wager and a resident of Dulhera village was all praise for Sanjeev Balyan, `pradhan` of his village.

"Balyan rescued us from a group of 200-strong mob," Dilshad said, adding that Balyan with a group of 20 armed villagers saved them from the rioting mob.

The village head took us to his home and provided security, food and shelter and later escorted us to a safe place, he said.

Around 1,500 people from nearby areas, including Kakada, Kutba, Kutbi, Goyla, Garhi have taken refuge in Islamabad locality, said Yunus Ahmad, a resident of the area.

All the Muslims have fled from Kakda village since the eruption of the clashes, leaving behind their cattle and other belongings.

Pramod Kumar of Kakada village said that it was due to rumours that the Muslims have fled their homes.

Kakda village has a population of about 8,000 and out which around 2,000 are Muslims. But not a single Muslim family is left in the village.

Mohd Shanawaz, a resident of Shahpur village, said that Hindus and Muslims were living together for decades but it is for the first time that this kind of incident has happened.

It has also emerged that most of the injured in the riots were attacked with household objects like sickles, heavy sticks and country-made pistols.

Dr VK Johari, Chief Medical Officer of District Hospital Muzaffarnagar, said the victims were hit by blunt objects, sticks and sharp tools like sickle. Local made pistols were also used.

The victims, brought for treatment, are from Bawari, Bhora Khurd, Nath, Karana, Sohram and other adjoining places.

A 10-year-old girl, Azra, has received severe injuries in her right hand and stomach from a sharp object used to cut sugarcane, claimed her mother Herunisa, a resident of Bawari village.

She said that three of her family members including mother-in-law (60), brother-in-law (40) and 11-year-old daughter died when their house was attacked on Sunday.

Herunisa received injuries on her face by bullet shrapnels and her 5-year-old daughter, Aksa, also received injuries on her face and hand.

PTI