Communal violence between majority Hindus and Muslims in northern India's Uttar Pradesh region has left 45 people - 10 Hindus and 35 Muslims - dead and forced more than 41,000 people from their homes.
Most of the displaced are Muslims from the districts of Muzaffarnagar and Shamli - part of the country's prosperous sugarcane belt - who have sought shelter in over 40 mosques and schools which have been converted in relief camps run by the government.
The clashes were triggered on Aug. 27 when a Muslim youth was stabbed to death by two Hindu youths after he was accused of sexually harassing their sister. A Muslim mob stoned the two Hindus to death.
In the days that ensued, police inaction in dealing with the perpetrators and inflammatory speeches given by politicians from various parties stoked tensions between the two groups which have lived in this area in harmony since India's independence in 1947.
Around 147 villages have now been emptied of Muslims, many of whom were evacuated by the army and paramilitary forces after Hindu mobs went on the rampage, setting alight Muslim homes, mosques and killing people that once lived alongside. Muslims also retaliated, stone pelting and killing Hindus.
The violence has now ebbed, but thousands of displaced Muslims are too fearful to return. They want the government to relocate them elsewhere. But government officials say this would create a dangerous precedent and promote division rather than unity between the two groups.
Living conditions in the state-run relief camps vary. While most of the displaced have access to clean drinking water and food such as rice and lentils, there appears to be a lack of milk and nutritional foods for children.
There are fears of outbreaks of epidemics such as cholera, dysentery and diarrhea and due to poor sanitation in some of the camps. Doctors visiting Bassi Kala relief camp in Muzaffarnagar say they have found many cases of malaria and some cases of cholera. Better sanitation practices and mosquito nets are a high priority, they say.
Some displaced women have been forced to give birth in the camps, and say that they fear for their new born babies living in squalid conditions.
Women and girls also face a lack of basic necessities such as sanitary towels, soaps and other items to help with hygiene.
Children have not been to school for over two weeks and roam around the camps with little to do.
There is no sign of any form of education or activity for children, neither is there any psychosocial support for victims who have suffered trauma after witnessing the killings.
All pictures taken by Nita Bhalla/Thomson Reuters Foundation on September 17, 2013 in Bassi Kala relief camp and Kutwa village in Muzaffarnagar district, Uttar Pradesh state.