Muzaffarnagar riots: 'They harassed me daily and killed my uncles'
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"Every day for seven or eight days, they were harassing me on my way to school," says the 16-year-old, describing the circumstances leading to the triple murders that are supposed to have triggered the Muzaffarnagar violence.
"When I came home and told my family, my uncle Gaurav said he would come with me till Kawwal," she says. "That day when we reached Kawwal and they started harassing me again, Uncle protested. Sachin Uncle too came by. He told me to go home they would sort things out. I came back home. After that I don't know what happened."
More than three weeks later, with both her uncles and her alleged tormentor dead, and Uttar Pradesh plunged into its worst communal clashes in a decade, life has come to a standstill for her and her friends, none of whom have since gone back to school, Bharti Inter College, 8 km from her village.
The family, mourning the deaths of Gaurav and Sachin, ask why only one of the seven men named in the FIR has been arrested. Police say non-bailable warrants have been issued and stringent sections invoked. All that remains now is to find the men to be punished.
The genesis of the Muzaffarnagar riots is not just that of two communities that after decades of coexistence turned against each other. It is also the story of how objectives such as the right to education are hamstrung by social realities. While she was going to school, the 16-year-old would cycle 2 km every day and then take the bus to Nangla Manjor. Kawwal, where her alleged molester lived, was where she would park her bicycle before catching the bus.