Jammu and Kashmir MLA Engineer Rashid has drawn flak for his controversial remarks that Kashmiri Pandits must 'apologise to the majority community' for leaving them behind at the mercy of lawlessness.
“Kashmiri Pandits must seek unconditional apology from the majority community for migration and leaving them behind at the mercy of guns, grenades, bullets, crack-downs, PSAs, AFSPA, custodial killings, rapes, murders, forced labor, custodial disappearances, humiliation and rule of lawlessness,” the lawmaker was quoted as saying by the media in Kashmir.
“Let Kashmiri Pandits understand that they should not have left the valley under worst circumstances, had they been real Kashmiri nationalists. Let Kashmiri Pandits not seek return like tourists but should return to live and die with Muslim brothers under all eventualities,” Rashid added.
Rashid reportedly said that he appreciated those Pandit organsations and intellectuals who did not want to be part of a “conspiracy” regarding settlement of Kashmiri Pandits in the state.
Rashid's remarks came against the backdrop of a move by the Union government to build composite townships for Kashmiri Pandits, which has sparked protests by separatist groups. On the other hand, Kashmiri Pandit organisations have registered their protest against the concept of composite townships, saying they would be akin to ghettos.
Rashid’s comments led to an avalanche of critical reactions on social media. The angry posts on Twitter are part of trending hashtag#DimwitRashid.
Engineer Rashid we haven't forgotten what u did to us even after 25 yrs, and we won't let you forget it. #DimwitRashid— Panun Kashmir (@WandererSS6) April 11, 2015
Engineer Rashid wants apology from Kashmiri Hindus for their persecution. Ever heard oppressor seeking apology from victim? #DimwitRashid— ???? ???? Amit Raina (@rainaamit) April 12, 2015
Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed has said his government has no plans to
for settling Kashmiri Pandits in the Kashmir Valley. Around three lakh Kashmiri Pandits were forced to leave the Valley in the early 1990s when the first wave of militant violence erupted 25 years ago.