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Kashmiri Pandits Demand The Status of “Internally Displaced People”

Kashmiri Pandits want to ensure the preservation of their culture in the valley, as per the memorandum

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Kashmiri Pandits Community
Kashmiri Hindu Foundation head, Deepak Ganju spoke in the Indian community event held in honour of PM Modi. VOA
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  • The Kashmiri Hindu Foundation has passed a memorandum concerning the community of Kashmiri Pandits 
  • The Foundation has demanded that the Kashmiri Pandits be given the status of “internally displaced people”
  • The memorandum states several demands by the community to ensure preservation of their culture

Washington, June 25, 2017: The Kashmiri Hindu Foundation has passed a memorandum urging PM Modi to recognise Kashmiri Pandits as internally displaced people. They also wanted the government to ensure that the illegal occupants in the area be removed. The foundation also wanted an assurance that their property (left behind by them) will be protected.

In the memorandum submitted, the Foundation has said, “If Kashmiri Hindus lose their temples, houses and property, their ethnic cleansing will become permanent,”
The memorandum further stated,”Kashmiri Hindus should be recognised as internally displaced people and a declaration should be made to this effect. Implement a plan to ensure that property left behind by the refugees is preserved and protected and illegal occupants removed.”

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The foundation also wanted to ensure that the grievances of those Kashmiri Hindus will also be addressed who have signed the contract for the sale of property under any duress.

Deepak Ganju, the head of the foundation said, “Our places of worship have been burnt, vandalised and damaged. We strongly urge the government of India and the state government that our temples and cultural institutions in the Valley be secured, preserved and protected,”
Florida-based Deepak was here to attend the community event being held in the honour of PM Modi. She said that about 400,000 Kashmiri Pandits have been forced to leave Valley en-masse.

Ganju said, “About 1,200 killed and it goes on with just a few thousand remaining in the Valley.”

“Financial and state support for our socio-cultural- religious organisations, that we have managed to run even in our exile, is required urgently. State recognition should be given to Kashmiri Pandit writers, artists and social activists and grants should be provided for them to further their work. Centres need to be built for the preservation of thousands of years of our history, culture, tradition and works of art.”, the foundation demanded in the memorandum.

prepared by Nikita Tayal of NewsGram. Twitter: @NikitaTayal6 

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  • s.k. bhat

    This is a wake up call for Mr. Modi to address the problems of left over Kashmiri Pandits living as invisible refugees in their country. If the present government, like the previous govts.who ignored to address their little problems for last 27 long years, Nobody on this earth will address their problem. The Present govt. has forgotten their pre-poll promises like removal of 370,Rehabilation of invisible refugees Kashmiri Pandits. But at least, the Government can find ways and means for their survival till they are moved to Kashmir.

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The Plight Of Kashmir’s Pandits

The Global Kashmiri Pandit Diaspora said a memorandum signed by thousands of Kashmiri Pandits has been addressed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi

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Kashmiri Pandits
Plight of Kashmiri Pandits continues: Community members. Flickr

Dozens of Kashmiri Pandits on Friday paid homage to civilians, Army men and their community members killed since 1989 and said the plight of Pandits still continues.

For 28 years, the Kashmiri Pandit community has been observing September 14 as ‘Martyrs’ Day-Balidan Diwas’ at B.K. Ganjoo memorial park in Central Delhi.

United Kingdom-based activist Shafalica Bhan Kotwal who has been fighting for the rights of the Kashmiri Pandits, said: “There is no major change in the lives of Kashmir Pandits, their plight still continues despite Bharatiya Janata Party being in power.

Kashmiri pandits
Kashmir. Pixabay

“Most of them were thrown out of their homes. They are living in pathetic conditions in shelter homes with no basic facilities.”

She said the community was once accustomed to living in minus 17 degrees Celsius. “Their families are now living in the hostile Jammu weather,” she added.

The son of Kasmiri Pandits’ leader Tika Lal Taploo, Ashutosh Taploo, was at the meeting. He said: “My father was killed not just because he was a Pandit..because he was looked as the Hindu community leader.”

Kashmiri Pandits
Kashmiri Hindus protest renaming of Shankaracharya Hill. Flickr

Taploo said his father was the first Pandit to have fallen to terrorist bullets in the Valley.

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“Till today no government has brought any major change in Pandits’ lives, the atrocities we experienced and psychological trauma we suffered is fresh” he said.

In a statement calling for justice to “victims of terrorism,” the Global Kashmiri Pandit Diaspora said a memorandum signed by thousands of Kashmiri Pandits has been addressed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and submitted to Union Minister Hansraj Ahir. (IANS)