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Kesav Rao - Demo-Cry-13

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22.5'' x 15'' - charcoal on paper

After the mind-numbing violence of the riot comes the struggle to reclaim life. Agrima Bhasin visits the Muzaffarnagar relief camps and comes back with haunting stories.
Chando wraps eight month-old Saifa warmly, since the local media is abuzz with reports of untimely and preventable child deaths. The causes are diverse - Zero medical aid, severe cold, pneumonia, snake bite, paucity of milk, starvation or fever.

A stitch in time, Chando believes, would have "saved our children from dying". The premature deaths of children (and even women and elderly persons) are increasingly attributed by survivors to the negligence and head-sand approach of Samajwadi party led state government, which continues to deny urgent medical assistance to survivors in dire need. "If they don't want to come here, at least the sarkar (government) can send a pair of gloves, scissors, blades and hygiene kit," says Rano (45), a respected midwife (dai) who has helped deliver 20 infants at Barnavi (ll) (name of a relief camp) since the riots.

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