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New Delhi: The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has taken suo motu cognizance of a media report that at least 30 makeshift dwelling units of Hindu migrants from Pakistan were gutted in a fire  which broke out at “Majnu Ka Tilla” in Delhi on  November 27, 2016.

Reportedly, the affected families are spending difficult time on pavements as the temporary arrangements promised by the SDM concerned for their shelter, have not yet been provided. The victims have complained that they do not even have food, clothes and basic amenities, which are necessary for a human being. About 500 Hindu migrants, who came from Pakistan to India during 2013-2014, had temporarily settled at ‘Majnu ka Tila’ in Delhi.

The Commission has observed that the contents of the news report raise a serious issue of violation of their Right to Life and Dignity. It is tragic that a large number of people are spending nights under the open sky in the cold without any shelter. The victims are in dire need of immediate relief by the government agencies,  said an NHRC release.

The NHRC also observed that the government, the Municipal Corporations and other local bodies ought to formulate a comprehensive Housing Policy to provide dwelling units to these people and till the policy is implemented fully in letter and spirit, temporary night shelters with basic facilities of food, lodging and health care should be constructed to enable the poor homeless people spend their lives in a comfortable manner, the NHRC release said.

Accordingly, it has issued notices to the Chief Secretary, Government of NCT of Delhi and Commissioner, North Delhi Municipal Corporation (NDMC), to submit a detailed report in the matter within four weeks. The Chief Secretary has also been directed to look into the matter personally to ensure that immediate relief is provided to the affected families and steps are taken for their rehabilitation.

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