Written by Kumudu Jayawardana
27 Dec, 2013 | 11:01 am
At least 34 children have died in relief camps set up for thousands of people who fled their homes during Hindu-Muslim clashes in the northern Indian state of Uttar Pradesh in September, an official report says.
The report also said 4,783 people were still living in five relief camps in Muzaffarnagar and Shamli districts.
More than 60 people died in the clashes in September.
The riots were described as the worst in India in a decade.
Thousands of people fled their homes in the violence which was sparked by the killing of three men who had objected to the harassment of a young woman.
A report by a government appointed panel said at least 34 children, aged below 12, had died in the relief camps.
There were reports in the Indian media that many of these children had died of severe cold.
“The cause of the death of all these children is different with about four dying because of pneumonia while some others died because of dysentery and one due to premature birth,” a senior official of Uttar Pradesh state AK Gupta told reporters.
He said most of the children who died “had been taken outside the camps for treatment by their parents or were referred to government hospitals for treatment”.
A total of 65 people were killed and 85 others were injured in September’s rioting. The clashes also left more than 50,000 people, mostly Muslims, homeless.
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