Riot-hit Muslims of Atali village have refused to accept the compensation amount of Rs 27,46,000 offered to them by the district administration, as they alleged that it is far less than what was promised to them initially. They also alleged that essential services such as transport and goods were being “denied” to the community.
Kapil Patwadi from the Ballabhgarh Revenue department said, “The process of giving compensation to those in Atali has begun. A total amount of Rs 27,46,000 is being given out to 28 families who were affected by the riots. The money has been divided based on an assessment of the damage done.”
While the Revenue department maintained that the compensation had been accepted by the Muslim community, riot victims said this was not the case. “The damage done to our homes and belongings is one thing. But we were also in a situation where we couldn’t return to our homes for almost two weeks. Farming has suffered and those with businesses have had to start from scratch. Before returning home, we were promised a total of Rs 1 crore to be divided among those affected,” Nizam Ali, a resident, said.
National Minority Commission member Farida Abdullah Khan, who had visited the Ballabhgarh police station and the village after the rioting, also said that the compensation offered was “inadequate”.
“Earlier, the administration talked about giving compensation that amounted to a crore. This is very inadequate. If you go to the village and see the damage that has been done, this will become apparent. Moreover, the lives of the community has been completely displaced,” she said.
Villagers added that the continuing denial of essential services to Muslims was further leading to financial losses.
“Auto-rickshaws driven by Hindus do not stop for us. They (Hindus) are refusing to sell us the small things we need. So a lot of people have begun leaving the village, while the old have simply stopped going into the city for work. A few families, who are wealthier than the rest are supporting the entire community right now,” Mohammad Ehsan, a villager, said.
Members of the Jat community, however, denied that there was any “official” decision to boycott services to Muslims.
“There are some people who do not wish to interact with the Muslim community since they are insisting on building the mosque. But there has been no official decision. It is a personal matter,” Sudhir Sharma, a villager, said.
Violence broke out in Atali village on May 25 after 2,000 heavily-armed men selectively targeted Muslim homes located near an under-construction mosque — which served as the flashpoint for the violence.
While the Jat community had maintained that the mosque is being built on land that belonged to the gram panchayat, the Muslims had said that it was Waqf Land.
Earlier, a Faridabad court had also ruled in favour of the Muslim community.