tirsdag 10. mars 2020

'I cannot find my father's body': Delhi's fearful Muslims mourn riot dead

As Mohammad Arshad’s body was brought into the courtyard, his lifeless face covered in a white shroud, the wailing began. The 22-year-old house painter, who had been beloved by his six sisters and would always bring them fruit when he finished work, had died a brutal death two days earlier. He had been killed because he was Muslim.

Several of Arshad’s sisters reached out to touch his cold bruised cheeks. “Please wake up, brother,” they cried. “Wake up. Please open your eyes.”

Arshad’s death is just a small fragment of the devastating legacy of the riotsthat engulfed Delhi last week – the worst religious violence in the capital in decades. For four consecutive days, Hindu mobs of thousands roamed the streets of north-east Delhi, destroying Muslims’ houses and shops, and lynching or killing Muslim residents. The bodies of the dead are gradually being returned to families but the thousands of Muslims who fled their homes in the riots are mostly still too afraid to go back.