Mulayam’s remark on riot camps taken to minorities panel

New Delhi, Dec 26: The National Commission for Minorities Thursday admitted a petition seeking action against Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh for saying that not one of the Muzaffarnagar riot victims now lives in any relief camp.

The petitioner cited remarks made by Mulayam Singh while addressing a party gathering in Uttar Pradesh capital Lucknow Dec 23, on the occasion of the birth anniversary of late prime minister Chaudhary Charan Singh.

“There are no riot victims at all in the (Muzaffarnagar) camps. You can check. These are people who are conspirators. BJP and Congress have conspired. They have asked people to stay there at night and sit on dharnas,” the petitioner quoted Mulayam Singh as saying.

The petitioner, Shehzad Poonawala, a lawyer by training who has delivered over 3,000 blankets donated by people to the camps, listed 31 children who have died of cold at the relief camps.

He also listed the number of people in at least 13 camps in Muzaffarnagar and Shamli districts of western Uttar Pradesh.

The inhabitants of the camps fled their homes after the riots in early September, and many of them are now unwilling to return to their villages.

The petitioner has sought that besides taking action against the Samajwadi Party chief, the commission should also direct the state government to make an honest and accurate assessment of the people displaced in the riots, and provide ration and relief material to those in the camps.

Poonawala told IANS that Minorities Commission chairperson Wajahat Habibullah has promised to take up the matter.

IANS