Kashmiri Pandits raise voice for justice at Jantar Mantar

Demanding justice, members of the Global Kashmiri Pandit Diaspora and the All India Kashmiri Samaj staged a protest at Jantar Mantar here on Saturday.

The demonstration was also joined by Congress leader and senior lawyer Vivek Tankha.

The Kashmir issue once again gained momentum after the release of the Vivek Agnihotri directed Bollywood film ‘The Kashmir Files’.

Highlighting the government’s ‘apathetic’ nature, Vivek Tankha said: “There will be protests if justice is not served for 32 years. Lakhs of people fled the Valley, many were killed, women were raped, and houses were burnt to ashes. But was anyone punished? Would anyone dare to go back? We cannot go to Kashmir if it is not safe, even though we are Indians.

“The government had a responsibility, both yesterday and today. We travel all over the world thinking that one day we will go back to Kashmir. Therefore, we are here asking for justice.”

Talking about the reluctance of the policymakers to discuss the Kashmir issue in the Parliament, Kashi, the coordinator of ‘Global Kashmiri Pandit Pravasi’ in the NCR, said: “We are holding the protest at Jantar Mantar so that our voices reach the government. For 32 years, no one has discussed our displacement in the Parliament. Till date, no legal action has been taken against the criminals and murderers. They have all gone scot-free.

“The government has not taken cognizance of the displacement of Kashmiri Hindus till date. The state governments have also ignored our issues. We, the Hindus from Kashmir, deserve to have a voice and be settled in the Valley safely.”

In 1989, Kashmiri Hindu leader Pandit Tika Lal Taploo was assassinated in Srinagar.

A few months later in 1990, members of the Hizbul Mujahideen warned Hindus to leave the Valley, which was also carried by a Srinagar-based Urdu newspaper. After this, fearing for their lives, scores of Kashmiri Pandits decided to flee.

However, even after 30 years, they are still awaiting justice.

As per data, there were 75,343 families in Kashmir in January 1990, of which more than 70,000 migrated from the Valley between 1990 and 1992. According to estimated figures, 399 Kashmiri Pandits were murdered between 1990 and 2011.

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