A Dream To Cherish

  • admin@kashmirink.com
  • Publish Date: Apr 1 2016 3:16PM
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  • Updated Date: Apr 6 2016 5:31PM

The common Kashmiri believes a homeland shared by Muslims and Pandits is still possible

 

It's my desire that Kashmiri Pandits should come back to the valley. We should be studying in schools and colleges and working in offices together, just like the good old days. And we can live together as good neighbours and friends if there is political will. There is a great need to rehabilitate both the Pandits who have migrated and those who have stayed back. The important thing is that the Pandits who come back are accommodated and settled among the majority community.

– Rafiq Ahmad

54-year-old trader. Lives in Srinagar and deals in wholesale business 

 

The biggest loss the migration of Kashmiri Pandits has caused is the brain drain. Some of our best intellectuals and scholars were lost to the migration, and art and culture is the best way to create strong bonds between the Pandits and the Muslims.

Any reconciliation can at least provide a ray of hope to our older generation that has spent most of their life in Kashmir. The Pandit community is on the verge of an identity crisis and a breakdown of their social fabric. We need to ensure that the Pandits reconnect with their roots.

Amit Wanchoo

37-year-old Event Manager, and organiser of film shoots. Resides in Srinagar, runs a company, Space Communications

 

The migration was Kashmiri Pandits happened mainly due to the vicious attitude of the then governor Jagmohan. The Pandits and the Muslims are brothers from the same land and cannot be separated merely on the basis of religion. Instead of recollecting the dark days and the ugly past, we must work towards a bright and prosperous future of the Pandit community. We need to initiate Confidence Building Measures, which must include restoration of all damaged temples and properties of the Pandits.

Nadeem Ahmad

65-year-old businessman. Resides in Srinagar and runs a retail business

 

It’s a fact that the migration of the Pandits was orchestrated by Jagmohan. I stay in Habba Kadal, where we still share our neighborhood with the Pandits. We have never made them feel insecure. We participate in all their festivals.

Showkat Ahmad

42-year-old , Resides in Srinagar and works for a private bank

I have been as a salesman in a shop on Residency Road for years. I never feared for my life or saw any kind of scaremongering. I only pray that the Pandits who have left Kashmir should put an end to the prevailing bitterness, and instead focus on forging fresh bonds with the Muslims.

Ghettoisation of Kashmiri Pandits is a wrong policy. Instead, the younger Pandit generation should be invited here to see what Kashmir actually stands for.

Teklal Manhas,

60-year-old salesman at Gandhi Ashram of Handicrafts, Residency Road, Srinagar

 

The numbers of Kashmiri Pandit killings cited by various agencies are exaggerated. We never get proper estimates of either the number of the Pandits who migrated or those who were killed. When Kashmiri Muslims were tagged as militants or informers, the Pandits lost the courage to face the uncertain political situation in the valley. They fled because they didn't have any great love for the motherland. But today, if they want to come back, we welcome them with open arms since we share the same culture and speak the same language.

Ghulam Mohiuddin

Shopkeeper at city center Lal Chowk

 

 

My family didn't leave Kashmir but all our relatives did. Today, when we meet our friends and relatives after all these years, we barely recognise them. The Pandits staying in cities like Bangalore and Delhi have gotten used to all the modern facilities and it's difficult for them now to get adjusted in the valley.

It's unfortunate that marriages of Kashmiri Pandits have taken place outside the community as it has led to a breakdown of our social fabric. Secondly, staying back in Kashmir without any of our relatives has put us in isolation. We don't have enough community members to celebrate our festivals although our Muslim neighbours have never made us feel alone.

VN Bhardwaj

57-year-old,  shuttles between Jammu and Srinagar Cashier at Gandhi Ashram of Handicrafts, Residency Road, Srinagar

 

It's the duty of every Kashmiri Muslim to safeguard the rights of the Pandits. There's no way the Pandits would return to the valley without assurances of safety.

We can start the process of reconciliation by bringing younger Pandits here and show them the legacy of Kashmir. Religious tourism is one way to help the Pandits reconnect with the valley. The condition of the Pandits living in migrant colonies in Jammu is heart-wrenching and we must relocate and rehabilitate them in an organised manner.

Sanjay Raina

Government Employee

Due to common problems, I disposed off the property in Kashmir in 2012 and moved to Delhi. It was never under any fear or fright that I left Kashmir. Migration is a vast issue which has impacted the livelihood of lakhs of people. Today, when this issue is debated there is too much of negativity involved. As far the question of KP’s returning to Valley is concerned, it is highly unlikely that the younger generation will come back since they are well settled outside Kashmir. They have a limited scope for jobs in the Valley. It is the older generation which is longing to come back. If at all KP’s return, they must be accommodated in clusters that would ensure their safety and security.  

Ravi Bhan

47-year-old, resides in Srinagar, Government employee since last 25 years