The authorities should also conclude their investigations into riot-related crimes including alleged sexual violence, and initiate appropriate prosecutions, it said. A Human Rights Watch statement urged the Central Government to ensure that the Uttar Pradesh authorities provided aid to the displaced and their safe return or resettlement.

India should also enact a strong law to prevent and respond to communal violence in consultation with rights experts, and in compliance with well-established international human rights principles, it said.

The state government forcibly closed camps housing thousands displaced four months ago in rioting between Hindus and Muslims in Muzaffarnagar and surrounding districts that left more than 60 dead, the statement said.

Instead of displacing these people again, the Uttar Pradesh government should provide needed relief and ensure the safe and voluntary return or resettlement for all those displaced.


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