Kashmiri separatists say won’t allow colonies for Pandits, soldiers

  • Ashiq Hussain, Hindustan Times, Srinagar
  • Updated: May 13, 2016 19:58 IST
Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) chairman Yasin Malik (HT File Photo)

Kashmiri separatists on Friday mounted an attack on Mehbooba Mufti-led coalition government saying any plans to establish “separate townships for Kashmiri Pandits, colony for ex-servicemen and providing land to non-state subjects” won’t be allowed.

Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) chairman Yasin Malik said that his party would fight any attempt to establish separate colonies for Pandits and ex-servicemen of the state.

He said that Pandits have a right to live in the Kashmir Valley like others. “They are like our brothers and sisters. But we won’t allow the government to settle them behind the walls of hatred on the pattern of Israel,” Malik said while addressing a press conference.

“There are already about 10,000 Pandits living with their Muslim brethren in Kashmir. But composite colonies will be opposed tooth and nail,” he said.

On Thursday, the government confirmed its plans to set-up townships for the Pandits who migrated from the Valley in early 1990s.

Government spokesperson and education minister Naeem Akhtar said that the government was keen to get Kashmiri Pandits back with “respect and dignity”.

Malik was also aghast over the government’s new industrial policy and opposed establishment of any Sainik Colony in the state.

He said that his party would oppose any Sainik colony whether that was for army men from the state or outside. “Even if we have to give our blood to stop these policies we will not hesitate to do so,” he said.

New industrial policy of the state allows non-state subjects to get land on lease for establishing industries in the state.

Malik said that new industrial policy was similar to establishing East India Company which later subjugated the whole country.

While addressing people on Friday prayers at Jamia Masjid, moderate separatist leader Mirwaiz Umar Farooq also came out criticizing the government for its ‘anti-people policies’.

He said that the people sitting in the state assembly were working for the interests of the Indian establishment.

“Those who used to talk against Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) have now joined them to further the interests of India,” Mirwaiz said.

He said that there were attempts from different quarters to usurp the land of the state. “Either in the name of colonies for refugees or establishing the industries, conspiracies are being hatched to control the land of the state,” he said.

The moderate leader said that any such policy which would compromise the special status of the state would be opposed.

Mirwaiz also called for a strike on May 21 to commemorate the death anniversary of his father Mirwaiz Molvi Mohammad Farooq, who was assassinated on the day in 1990.

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