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Upananda Brahmachari | HENB | Barmer and Bhopal | 27 Feb 2015:: It’s a good news for the long suffered Pakistani Hindu migrants in India that nearly 7,000 of them, who have been living like refugees in various towns of Rajasthan, will start getting permanent citizenship and long term visas from Monday last. The first camp for the purpose was held at Barmer on Monday.
There are seven migrant camps so far in Jodhpur which receive an ever-ending flow of migrants almost every week by Thar Link Express, the weekly train between India and Pakistan. The migrants stuffed with all Jihadi horrors and Islamic persecution from Pakistan, reach India with a only hope to live this side free from further bleeding and shedding tears.
It is told that most of those who come never return as minorities have been facing difficult living conditions in an Islamic Pakistan since the demolition of the Babri Masjid in 1991. But, the situation actually worsened with the strengthening of the Taliban force in Pakistan, Afghanistan and in entire Islamic world, but this Babri demolition is an added excuse.
However, life is also tough for the migrants here in India, wherever in Rajasthan, Delhi, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh or in Punjab. They primarily belong to the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes of Hindu society and live in camps on the outskirts of the city, which lack even basic facilities for water supply, education, health and even shelter.
The camp at Alkausar Nagar in Barmer does not even have a toilet, one of the focus areas of the Prime Minister; neither does it have regular water supply. The Chief Minister of Rajasthan, Smt Vasundhara Raje visted these areas many times personally or sent her representatives, but the problems of these migranats are yet to be mitigated.
“We have to get water from the nearby Madrasa, our children do not get admission in government schools and we cannot afford private schools,” says a fresh migrant who came to Rajasthan with his family just last month but did not wish to be identified for fear of persecution of his family back in Karachi.
Those who get long-term visas have to wait for seven years before they are entitled to apply for Indian citizenship, which is not an easy task.
“Many people also return because the living conditions are so bad here, but the inflow of people still continues. Government agencies often cite security reasons for grant of citizenship, though most of us were citizens of undivided India; they can at least give us refugee status,” says Sri Hindu Singh Sodha, who was a migrant but is now an Indian citizen. Mr. Sodha has been working as a Human Right activists in these areas for many years to establish the rights of Pakistani Hindus to live in India. His Seemant Lok Sangathan is working for the cause of both Pak and Bangladesh Minority Migrants (P&BMM).
The migrants are settled in Barmer, Jaisalmer, Bikaner and now Jodhpur because the Thar Express arrives here.
Meanwhile, BJP-ruled Madhya Pradesh has also decided to grant citizenship rights to over 20,000 Hindu migrants from Pakistan.
The move follows chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan‘s assurance during the recent civic polls – which the BJP won decisively – that ‘no Pakistani Hindu would be asked to leave the state’ as long as he is at the helm and that he would seek Prime Minister Narendra Modi‘s intervention.
Chouhan had made the promise in Indore, home to the largest number of such people in the state.
Special camps have now been lined up in Bhopal and Indore where senior officials from the Union home and external affairs ministries work with local authorities to help such migrants get such rights.
The process starts with the local collector recommending citizenship rights. The file is sent to the home and foreign ministries in Delhi for vetting and returns to the collector, who then issues the certificate.
But, this process of applying balm on the pain of Hindu Refugees has set some serious question whether the present Govt of India is helping Pakistan and Bangladesh for their programme of Hindu cleansing from those lands?
A massive population exchanges occurred between the two newly formed nations, India and Pakistan in the months immediately following Partition in August 1947, out of unrest, insecurity, communal conflicts and choice of own home. Once the lines of separation were established, about 14.5 million people crossed the borders to what they hoped was the relative safety of religious majority. Based on 1951 Reports as available from then India, Pakistan and British sources, of displaced persons, 7.226 million Muslims went to Pakistan from India while 7.249 million Hindus and Sikhs (and very small amounts of Muslims) were forced to move to India from Pakistan immediately after partition. About 11.2 million or 78% of the population transfer was on the west, with Punjab accounting for most of it; 5.3 million Muslims moved from India to West Punjab in Pakistan, 3.4 million Hindus and Sikhs were moved from Pakistan to East Punjab in India; elsewhere in the west 1.2 million moved in each direction to and from Sind. The initial population transfer on the east involved 3.5 million Hindus moving from East Bengal to India and only 0.7 million Muslims moving the other way. The the facts and figures still remain unauthenticated due to the Nehruvian indulgence for Pak menace. Most of the Hindu-Sikh refugees came to India prior 1971 were able to manage their citizenship or pro-citizenship however.
The fate of Hindu-Sikh migrants had to leave their homeland in 1965 Indo-Pak war and in 1971 Bangladesh Liberation war is out of any justice or any rights in its proportionate dilemma. The problem of East Pakistan/Bangladesh migrants was first dealt with, after Partition, by the Nehru-Liaquat Pact of 1950. Consequently, about six lakh illegal migrants were sent back to East Pakistan. However, the migration continued unabated. Mr. B.N. Mullik, the veteran Director of the Intelligence Bureau, had proposed a Prevention of Infiltration Programme which was implemented by the Government of India whereby about 1,50,000 illegal migrants were repatriated to East Pakistan during 1963-65. After the emergence of Bangladesh in 1971, the Indira Gandhi-Mujibur Rahman Pact of 1972 had provided that all those who entered India prior to March 25, 1971, would be allowed to remain in this country while the rest were to return to Bangladesh. Accordingly, as many as seven million refugees returned to Bangladesh. It would, therefore, be seen that in the past India and Pakistan and its eastern part subsequently Bangladesh had an history of amicable settlement, through negotiated agreements, the return of East Pakistan/Bangladesh migrants from India. When Begum Khaleda visited India as Prime Minister during her first term, she made an extraordinary statement that there were no Bangladeshis in India. No doubt, this remains her stand even today. Her Foreign Minister, Mr Morshed Khan, told a Press conference at Dhaka on February 6, 2003 that “there is not a single Bangladeshi migrant in India”. But, the facts remain that owing to the various occurrences both in Pakistan in Bangladesh in the series of 1965, 1971, 1992 and the later phases of insurgency both in PAK and BD, India had to accept more than 10 million Hindus refugees (still unaccounted) came to their last refuge in India out religious hatred, ethnic violence and financial hardship and instability in their origin land.
The legal definition of a refugee is provided in the 1951 Convention of UN relating to the Status of Refugees which states that a refugee is a person who is outside the country of his/her origin, has a well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, political opinion or membership of a particular social group, and owing to such fear is unable or unwilling to avail himself/herself of the protection of that country.
But, none of the GOI or the UNHCR, the UN agency to ensure the international protection of refugees worldwide, take care of theses over 10 million Hindu migrants from Bangladesh and Pakistan, maximum of those are Bengali speaking Bangladeshi Hindus. Moreover, India’s laxity in framing proper refugee laws only seems to have escalated the refugee quandary. Despite being asked to sign the Refugee Convention 1951 and Protocol 1967, and promulgate a legal framework for refugees, the Indian government has been lackadaisical. Interestingly, the UNHCR hails India for its record in supporting refugees. In a report, it says, “Overall, India offers safe asylum to refugees and asylum seekers. Even in the absence of a national legal framework for refugees, India has traditionally been hospitable towards refugees.” But, the rights of Hindu migrants from Bangladesh and Pakistan are always ignored and dealt with zero yardsticks.
When Population of concern (PoC) of migrants/semi refugee/asylum seekers/petitioner of long term visa, as reflected in the Report of UNHCR, Indian Chapter as on Sept 2014 as a total of 2,05,132 people of concern by country of origin, PoC of Myanmar 16,919, Afghanistan 11,549, Somalia 746, Tibetans & Sri Lankans 175,000 and Others 918, there is no mention of Hindu migrants from Bangladesh or Pakistan. Why?
Actually, the agencies working for UN in India or the refugee security and rehabilitation matters, i.e. UNHCR, COVA and CLMC are to much secular in their viewpoints and do not see any plight of 10 million Hindu migrants in India from Bangladesh and Pakistan. And, GOI is finding so many excuses to avoid any firm resolution to accept these Hindu people as honored Indian citizen or help them to regain their lost might and rights in their original land in Pakistan, Bangladesh and even in Sri Lanka for the Tamil Hindus.
The numbers of Hindus in Pakistan and Bangladesh are decreasing fast with unimaginable rates. The 16% Hindus in Pakistan in 1947 has come down to less than 2% in Pakistan and the 23% Hindus in 1971 has come down to 8% in Bangladesh (erstwhile East Pakistan).
So, without rising the voice for protecting the minority rights in neighboring countries in Bangladesh and Pakistan, India is taking easy steps to allow some long term visa or to grant some citizenship for earning some political gain. This is fatal and defacto help to the Islamic countries of Bangladesh and Pakistan for their Quranic agenda to clean the land from Kaffirs like Hindu-Sikh and Buddhists.
Any persecuted Hindu from any part of the world is most welcome in Bharat. It is their original land. But, where Hindus are loosing their lands, wealth, honor and rights from other places from the very parts of Indian subcontinent and even in some parts of Indian Kashmir, Assam, Kerala and Bengal, GOI must not be vacate looker into the matter.
“Govt in India, specially under the Prime Minister-ship of Narendra Modi, must not discriminate in policy matters. While they are giving citizenship to the Hindu migrants friends from Pakistan, the same policy must be adopted for the 10 million Bengali Hindus refugees from Bangladesh”, says Subhas Chakroborty, leader of Nikhil Banga Nagarik Sangha, an organisation working for both the refugee status for BD migrant Hindus in India and the Hindu home land in Bangladesh.
Chakroborty, also the Editor of Mayer Dak (Call of the Mother) reacts, “Hindus of Bangladesh have lost everything and are being victimized by both the BNP and Awami League in their respective ruling. Hindus are still leaving their motherland in Bangladesh every day and coming to India in a very hapless and helpless condition. This is a big problem in India. This should not be overlooked or discriminated. While Sindhi or Tibetans are getting easy help from GOI, then why so hardship for the Bengali speaking Hindu migrants from Bangladesh? We earnestly demand the refugee status for these Bangladeshi Hindus at first before confirming their citizenship or repatriation. But, uprooted Hindus of Bangladesh have been claiming their home land in Bangladesh as their final demand.”
The exterior ministry in Government of India must think for making pressure under international law and available pacts and treaty to ensure the safety, security and rights of India origin Hindu people in its neighboring countries in Pakistan and Bangladesh. Hindu must steadily stay in those countries without any level of ‘refugee’, ‘migrant’ or ‘asylum seeker’.
Clearly it is seen India has ignored the problem for six decades, possibly on the assumption that the problem may eventually go away. It was the policy of Congress. But, BJP cannot endorse the same. Indian immigration policy suffers from the same willful blindness and bureaucratic fallacies. Make fencing to people out might solve some problems. But growing radicalism, oppression upon non believers and no one to help situation lead the line of seeking asylum in India. At this point, New Delhi must look beyond barbed wire and bullets. Silent overview of Delhi on the subject will certainly help the Islamic Governments of Pakistan and Bangladesh for their agenda of inaction in the matters related to the evacuation of minority Hindus beyond the borders.
At gross it is perceived that the Pakistan and Bangladesh Governments feel free to fill all the gaps of human rights of the minority Hindus with all Taliban talisman and on the other hand Indian Govt is cleaver enough to issue the citizenship certificates to the migrants where political gain is high and the hazards are less.
Giving citizenship to such evacuated Hindu people from Pakistan is a humanitarian work. But it is too much inhumane to just see how these two the countries of Pakistan and Bangladesh are going fast Hinduless. Govt of India must discard any help to these Islamic countries of PAK and BD in their Hindu cleansing operations and ensure Hindu safety and security and future prospects for the minority Hindus and other minorities in Bangladesh, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. [To be concluded]
Courtesy: Links and Pics used above.