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Upananda Brahmachari | HENB | New Delhi | Aug 4, 2021:: Union Minister of State for External Affairs and Culture Meenakshi Lekhi’s recent statement on Displaced Kashmiri Pandit Communit made a row of controversy allegedly hurting the sentiments and honour of the displaced Hindu Pandit community of Kashmir valley. The apex body of the community ‘All India Kashmiri Samaj’ reacted sharply over the statement of Lekhi.
In a statement of behalf of All India Kashmiri Samaj (AIKS), Col (Dr) Tej Kumar Tikoo (Retd) vehemently opposed the humiliating statement of Meenakshi Lekhi of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for her ‘disparaging statement, comparing the return of and rehabilitation of displaced Kashmiri Pandits to Kashmir with migrant labourers returning to their villages from various cities of India during the Covid Pandemic’ situation. Tikoo also reminded Lekhi for the ground situation of Kashmir still with insecurity for the displaced Kashmiri Pandits for a return in their homeland.
In an ethnic cleansing and genocide during 1989-90 by insurgent Islamic Jihadi groups, the affluent Hindu Pandit community of Kashmir valley were tortured, killed, torched, raped, uprooted for which lakhs of Kashmiri Pandits are still living in camps and elsewhere in India out side their homeland in a great misery and melancholy.
In the AIKS’s communique dt 02 August 2021, the version of Lekhi was condemned as below:
“During a webinar held on 1 August 2021, Smt. Meenakshi Lekhi, while replying to a question by a displaced Kashmiri pandit, made a disparaging statement, comparing the return of and rehabilitation of displaced Kashmiri Pandits to Kashmir with migrant labourers returning to their villages from various cities of India during the Covid Pandemic. She further said that in India any one is free to live wherever they wanted to live. She further added that many people living at different places do not want to be disturbed as they are comfortable wherever they are presently living.
“Comparing the situation of ethnically cleaned Kashmir pundits with migrant labourers and other statements above, were derogatory, insensitive and amounted to sprinkling salt on the festering wounds of the displaced community.
“It is shocking that Smt Meenakshi Lekhi has not bothered to pursue the statement of many stalwarts of her own party over the years. These include statements of Sh. Atal Bihari Vajpayee, Sh. Narendra Modi, Sh Jagmohan, Sh. Ravinder Raina (President, BJP J&K State and JKUT) and many others. Even national Human Rights Commission had called violence perpetrated against Kashmiri Pandits as ‘akin to genocide’. Some years back, the Union Govt through a statement made by the Union Home Secretary, has called our killings as genocide.
“Being an articulate and well –established lawyer practicing in the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India, before becoming a minister, it would be naive for our community to think that Smt Meenakshi Lekhi made these uncalled for comparisons out of ignorance. It is likely such a statement from a Union minister was made ulterior motive and indicates that the Govt of India accepted that in a secular India, Kashmir need not be secular.
All India Kashmiri Samaj condemns this statement and would like to remind Smt Meenakshi Lekhi that it is the responsibility of the Union Govt to resettle and rehabilitate the ethnically displaced Kashmiri Pandits with the dignity and honor, in a secure environment”.
BJP is now claiming tall for its success for the solution of Kashmir Problems after the abrogation of Art 370 and 35 A. It’s true partially in view of controlling the Jihadi Terrorism in the valley. But, the matter of return and rehabilitation of Kashmir Pandits in the valley is still unsolved and barely uncared. In reality, 100% Jihadi majority in the Kashmir valley is not safe and secure for the return of Kashmir Pandits there for proper rehabilitation.
In a recent webinar+, eminent Pandit speakers and experts Dr Ajay Chrungoo, Chairman of Panun Kashmir; Sushil Pandit, Founder, Roots in Kashmir; Col Tej K Tikoo, President, All India Kashmiri Samaj (AIKS) and others Kashmiri activist like Adv Ankur Sharma, Chairman of Ikkjutt Jammu and Lakshmi Kaul criticized the Govt Policy on Kashmir for the return and rehabilitation of the displaced Kashmiri Pandits who are still outside the valley with a great anxiety.
Courtesy: The link/pic sources used above.