‘Some have started leaving’: Kashmiri Pandits fear that attacks on minorities in J&K will resume in 1990


SRINAGAR/ANANTNAG: Amid a flurry of targeted killings of minorities in Kashmir, a Kashmiri Pandit organization on Friday said that some employees of the community, who were provided government jobs as part of the rehabilitation package in 2010-11, are silently fearing their fears. Started going to Jammu. life, accusing the administration of being unable to provide a safe environment.

Meanwhile, the administration has given 10 days leave to the employees of the minority community, official sources said.

A female headmaster and a teacher were shot dead on Thursday inside a government school in the heart of the city, raising the number of civilians killed by terrorists in the Kashmir Valley to seven in five days.

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Four of the seven were from minority communities.

Along with these targeted killings, members of the Kashmiri Pandit community who were provided employment under the Prime Minister’s Rehabilitation Program in 2010-11 fear that terrorist groups will target them as well.

Sanjay Tiku, president of Kashmiri Pandit Sangharsh Samiti (KPSS), says, “About 500 or more people have started leaving from different areas like Budgam, Anantnag and Pulwama. Some non-Kashmir Pandit families have also left. ) “It may seem invisible but the migration is underway and I was anticipating it.

We had requested the Lt Governor’s office for appointment in June, but time has not been given till now. “We know who’s all gone.”

KPSS says it is now abundantly clear that the confidence building measure of providing employment to Kashmiri migrants is not appreciated by anti-minority forces.

He also reprimanded the administration.

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The Vesu migrant camp in south Kashmir’s Qazigund area, which houses around 380 families, became the center of administrative action on Friday morning when Anantnag Deputy Commissioner Piyush Singla along with police officials requested the families not to leave the transit camp.

Sunny Raina, president of Vesu Camp Package Employees Union, said, “They assured us of complete security and requested us not to go to Jammu.”

The organisation, which has 4,284 employees, had written to the chief secretary expressing fear for his life.

“In a state of extreme fear and panic, we bring to your attention that the entire minority population of Kashmiri Pandits performing their duties in Kashmir is appalled by the serious, anti-minority situation emerging in Kashmir.

“Due to the recent brutal and gruesome selective killings of members of the Hindu community, all the employees of the same community feel insecure and fearful,” he wrote.

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“The emerging situation reminds us of a similar situation in the 1990s, which led to the mass exodus of Kashmiri Pandits,” the memorandum said.

Raina argues that the camps where they live are completely safe, with several hundred workers living outside these camps and having to perform their duties in remote areas.

“It seems that the administration is not able to provide security to all the employees and hence, we have asked the chief secretary to relieve us of the duties till the situation normalises,” he said.

Raina said 20 per cent of the 380 families had left on Thursday, while some went out on Friday even before the Deputy Commissioner arrived at the camp.

Around 250 people living outside transit camps have left for Jammu since the attack on the minority community began a few days ago, says Vinod Raina, president of the PM Package Employees Union at Mattan in south Kashmir’s Anantnag district.

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“When the news of the killing of teachers in Srinagar reached, our fellow comrades from the Muslim community took us back to the camp.

“The relationship between the two communities is strong and I expect it to remain so,” says Raina, who joined as a teacher in 2010.

He said that some migrant workers living outside the transit camps have already shifted their base to Jammu.

“It’s sad,” another employee said on condition of anonymity.

“And the speed at which the government has been working for the past few years is not encouraging.”

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