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Will give up J-K residency rights if Minority Act diluted: Sikh group

"APSCC will oppose the inclusion of any group as a minority community, merely for vote-bank politics."

Updated: February 22, 2014 4:39 pm
File photo: Members of the Kashmiri Pandit Community shouting slogans during a demonstration to press for their demands in Jammu. File photo: Members of the Kashmiri Pandit Community shouting slogans during a demonstration to press for their demands in Jammu.

A Sikh organisation in Kashmir today said that the members of the community would surrender their residency rights in Jammu and Kashmir as a mark of protest if the state government went ahead with any move to dilute the Minority Act.

“We are against any dilution of or amendment in the National Commission for Minorities Act. Parliamentary panels’ recommendations regarding the Act are biased and cannot be accepted,” Chairman of the All Parties Sikh Coordination Committee (APSCC), Jagmohan Singh Raina, said in a statement here.

Claiming that the approach of the different political parties towards the people of Kashmir has always been “controversial”, he said, “These leaders get influenced by wrong information given to them by people or agencies with vested interests.

“Such information has always harmed the policies towards Kashmir and even today the approach and recommendation to the state government is against the real minority here, which is the Sikhs. We will oppose tooth and nail the recommendations that violate existing rules and regulations set by the government of India for minorities.”

A Parliamentary Committee recently asked J-K government to examine a demand for granting minority status to Kashmiri Pandits in view of their “pitiable condition” after they were forced to leave the Valley due to militancy.

Sikhs in the state will be forced to surrender their residency rights as a mark of protest if any “violation” is carried out in the Act, Raina said.

“APSCC will oppose every step taken to please any group with inclusion as a minority community, merely for vote-bank politics,” he said.

Despite repeated pleas and requests from APSCC, the state government has not implemented the National Minorities Act in Jammu and Kashmir, he said, adding that, “Delay in the implementation of the Act in the state seems intriguing.”

APSCC strongly condemns the state government’s proposal of introducing its own Minority Act, he said. “There is no need for a State Minority Act since some of the Central Acts like Haj Committee Act, 1959, The Workmen’s Compensation Act, 1923, and MGNREGA already stand implemented in (Jammu and Kashmir),” he said.

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  1. Daya Sagar
    Feb 24, 2014 at 11:43 am
    Reports have appeared in media on 21022014 that a parliament committee has submitted some recommendations.Adequate for survival relief be paid to all the militancy affected migrants in J&K, may it be from Kashmir Valley or from outside Kashmir Valley. Hope the committee has made recommendations like this.It has been right since 1947 that the J&K affairs have been handled with less of commitment to national cause and more to liking/ disliking of those who could push their personal cause more near the power centers.Reports have also appeared that the Parliamentary Committee asking Jammu and Kashmir Government for granting minority status to Kashmiri Pandits, if so it is the most unconcerned and irresponsible recommendation , and that too where in BJP leaders held voice. Do the PC members mean that Kashmiri Pandits are the only Hindu in J&K ? Do the Parliamentary Committee mean to say that its only the Kashmiri Pandits who have left valley after 1990? Do the PC mean that only Hindu who held stakes in J&K ( Particularly Kashmir Valley) are the Kashmiri Pundits. There are many sects of Hindu in J&K, there are many other Brahmins in J&K other than Kashmiri Pundits. What will such PC do if tomorrow Khajuria Brahmins demand minority status in J&K being much less in number than KPs ?There are some Rajput families also who have almost lost all their stakes in Kashmir Valley after 1990, their number is much less than KPs, should not they be granted minority status first ?More so in case KPs are to be Given Minority Status ,does PC mean that KPs will have minority status in Kashmir Valley only or w of State?In case KPs are to be given minority status in w of J&K then does the members of PC mean that KPs are not Hindu?Many non Permanent Resident Hindu and Muslims also left Kashmir valley who were otherwise staying there for more than even 3 to 4 decades. Some were born only in Kashmir Valley. No one talks of them. They are not paid even relief.I had been very much surprised earlier also when I had read in a media report that a 'wise' man like Chairman of National Commission for Minorities (NCM) Wajahat Habibullah too had some time advised to declare Kashmiri Pandits as minorities.It is surprising that The Parliamentary panel of 14-member sub-committee too has made such suggestions even after visiting J&K, this too is very disappointing case what has been said here in this news report is correct, any considerate mind will surely with go with the State Government's stand that the KP migrants belong to Hindu religion and as such do not qualify for grant of minority status separately ( more so in J&K State Government has granted Minority Status to no one on religious lines although it has been granted by GOI) .So strangely it has also been reported that "The Committee has opined that the state government has a Special Status in the Indian Consution", where as the COI no where mentions special status for J&K. Such like irresponsible utterances have already done a lot of damage to J&K affairs .Vote bank 'virus' has infected the w lot of Indian politics, including BJP, clearly emerges from the contents of this news item.daya sagar social activist sr coloumnist dayasagr45@yahoo