The non-migrant Kashmir Pandits staged a sit-in and Kashmiri Pandit Sangharsh Samiti (KPSS) president Sanjay Tickoo started a ‘fast-unto-death’ here on Sunday against the ‘punishing’ of the community members in the Valley.
They alleged they were facing harassment at the hands of the J&K government after the abrogation of Article 370 on August 5 last year.
“We strongly feel that the Disaster Management Relief, Rehabilitation and Reconstruction (DMRR&R) Department is punishing left out (non-migrant) Kashmiri Pandits – Kashmiri Hindus for staying back in Kashmir. Since the abrogation of Article 370 and 35 A, we are facing harassment and isolation at the hands of the Relief Department. Despite multiple directions from the High Court and recommendations from the Central Government through the Ministry of Home Affairs, Relief Department is playing with the life and security of the Non-Migrant Kashmiri Pandits – Kashmiri Hindus living in Kashmir Valley,” said Kashmir Pandit Sangharsh Samiti (KPSS) president Sanjay Tickoo after sitting on a fast.
The non-migrants also staged a sit-in at Ganesh Mandir, Ganpatyaar-Habba Kadal in the old city. Over 800 non-migrant Pandit families are presently living here and did not migrate out of the Valley after the eruption of militancy more than 30 years back.
Tickoo said despite rounds of meeting with the government officials besides a recent meeting with Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha, their demands were not being addressed.
The KPSS demands include a “vigilance inquiry against the officials of the Relief Department for “deliberately stalling and sabotaging” relief and rehabilitation of the non-migrant Pandits and implementation of High Court directions and recommendations of the Ministry of Home Affairs regarding jobs to the unemployed educated Kashmiri Pandit youth.
Other demands include “stress-free process of providing bonafide certificates’, monthly financial aid to 808 non-migrant Kashmiri Pandit families living in Kashmir, providing accommodation to the deserving and extension of benefits of Migrant Welfare Fund.