Narendra Modi's silence on rehabilitation of Kashmiri Pandits 'unfortunate'; community had high hopes from PM, says ASKPC

Jammu: Prime Minister Narendra Modi dashed the "high hopes" of Kashmiri Pandits during his recent visit to the Valley by staying mum on the issue of their rehabilitation, the All State Kashmiri Pandit Conference (ASKPC) said on Wednesday.

File image of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. AP.

File image of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. AP

Modi had visited Jammu and Kashmir on 19 May to inaugurate the 330-MW Kishenganga power project at Gurez in North Kashmir's Bandipora district. He also laid the foundation stone for the Srinagar Ring Road at the Sher-e-Kashmir International Conference Centre (SKICC) in Srinagar.

Though successive governments failed to rehabilitate Kashmiri Pandits, the community had "high hopes" from the prime minister, ASKPC general secretary T K Bhat said. "But it is unfortunate that he did not make even a passing reference about the displaced community (Kashmiri Pandits)," Bhat told reporters on Wednesday.

Expressing hope that Modi will consider the issue seriously, Bhat appealed to the Centre to make sure that the displaced people are rehabilitated together in one place. Lashing out at the Union government's decision to suspend anti-militancy operations during Ramzan, Bhat said it was done to please BJP's ally in the state, the People's Democratic Party (PDP).

He said the step will demoralise security agencies, especially at a time Pakistan is repeatedly violating the ceasefire at the border and terrorists are carrying out grenade attacks. It is wrong on the part of the Centre to announce a unilateral ceasefire under pressure of the PDP. This has demoralised the security forces and police, making them sitting ducks for the militants, he said.

"The security situation in Kashmir and on its borders is worst during this dispensation. There is a blood bath in the bordering villages due to Pakistan firing. A large number of security forces and people have got injured in grenade attacks by terrorists. Some of them have even died," Bhat said.

Forty-five people have died and over 130 injured in Pakistan shelling on the borders this year, which is the highest ever in last two decades, he said. "Every day, dozens of people get injured in grenade attacks by terrorists... This is the worst crisis in the last two decades," he added.

Asking the Centre to rethink its policy on Kashmir, the group opposed any dialogue with separatists, arguing that Kashmiri Pandits are the biggest stakeholders and must be taken into confidence. "Is the GoI (Government of India) doing their homework? They are playing with fire," said Bhat.

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Updated Date: Jun 06, 2018 19:05:11 IST

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