01, Oct 2020 | CJP Team
Ten days after Kashmiri Pandit Sangharsh Samiti (KPSS) president Sanjay Tickoo went on a fast-unto-death demanding urgent reforms for non-migrant Kashmiri Pandits, the Union Territory (UT) administration was forced to relent.
Dr. Shahid Iqbal Choudhary (IAS), the Deputy Commissioner of Srinagar met with Tickoo and other protesters at the protest site, and has now given the group a written undertaking promising that all genuine demands will be followed up, and requesting them to call off the hunger strike.
CJP stands with the KPSS in seeking an immediate redressal of all grievances, jobs for 600 non-migrant KP youth in the Valley, a monthly cash relief package for the most needy families, and preservation of cultural and religious sites in the Valley. Join CJP in this campaign as we stand with the Kashmiri Pandit community in Jammu and Kashmir. To help us advocate for their safety and rights, please donate generously here.
“I was adamant that I want assurances in writing. So, they agreed in principle to look into our demands. Next week we are having a high-level meeting,” said Tickoo who had been on hunger strike since September 20, 2020. This is a huge victory for the organisation that has been highlighting the plight of 808 non-migrant Kashmiri Pandit families who are still living in the Valley.
At least 150 of them are Below Poverty Line (BPL) struggling for food and medical care, and nearly 600 youth are unemployed. While they had earlier qualified for employment schemes of the government, a delay in implementation of the schemes led close to 100 of them becoming ineligible due to crossing age restrictions. The KPSS is demanding not only financial aid, but also swift implementation of government employment schemes. CJP has been supporting KPSS, which is it partner organisation, in their quest for Kashmiri Pandits in the Valley.
The letter by the Deputy Commissioner says, “In reference to our meeting held on September 30 2020, at the venue of the hunger strike, it is conveyed that the memorandum has been received from the organisation, and this shall be brought under active consideration of the Government for decision, for which a meeting with participation from KPSS will be organized shortly. District Administration will follow up all genuine demands projected.”
The letter goes on to urge, “In this regard, as discussed, you are requested to call off the hunger strike as further steps in the matter are being taken.”
The letter may be read here: