KPs stage massive joint protest at Lal Chowk in support of their demands

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Srinagar, June 4: In a historic move that can change the dynamics of Kashmiri Pandit politics; All Parties Migrants Coordination Committee (APMCC) and Kashmiri Pandit Sangarsh Samiti (KPSS) Kashmir alongwith various Kashmiri Pandit organisations working at ground level today joined hands for the common cause of Kashmiri Pandits and staged a massive protest demonstration at Lal Chowk Srinagar, Kashmir to protest against the discriminatory attitude of successive central and J&K Governments and their broken promise with APMCC activists at Porbandar and served an ultimatum to the state and central governments to fulfil the promise of initiating final and fruitful dialogue with them on 6-Point Charter of demands warning that failure to do so will force them to go for 3rd Fast unto-death at Srinagar on the Janamashtami Day on August 17, 2014. However the state government as usual tried to muzzle their voice by preventing them from a peaceful march by cane charging them during which many KPs received minor injuries.

Leading scores of demonstrators the KPs reminded the state government of its promise with APMCC twice during their fast unto death protests in 2011 at Jammu and later in 2013 at Porbandar after which the state government through the Revenue, Relief & Rehabilitation Minister Aijaz Ahmed Khan vide his DO letter No PS/HMOS/Rev/986/2013 dated 13-02-2013 to Collector Porbandar Gujarat requesting him to ask Vinod Pandit, Chairman APMCC to end his fast unto death so that their issues can be taken care of and dialogue initiated.
However as usual after one meeting the government slept over the issue forcing KPs to stage protest at Lal Chowk in support of their demands which include:
6-point charter of demands
1. Re-drafting and Passing of the pending Kashmir Temples and Shrines Bill in J&K Legislative Assembly
2. Probe into the multi-crore temple/shrines land encroachment in Kashmir
3. Dialogue with Pakistan for facilitating visit to Shardha Peeth Temple in POK
4. Establishment of Shardha Peeth University in J&K
5. One time compensation for over-aged Kashmiri Hindu youth outside Valley
6. Special employment package for Hindus of Kashmir living in Valley
The protestors also demanded minority status for the community and removal of nomenclature like migrants or non-migrants from official communication and designation asking for the word Kashmiri Pandit in every official communication. The protestors also warned of blame game between the central and state governments asking both the governments to do whatever is in their control to avoid another ugly situation where Kashmiri Pandits will have to launch fast-unto-death at Srinagar itself over their demands.

Kashmiri Pandits also asked the state and central government to facilitate a delegation visit to POK and Pakistan comprising of ground level workers of KP organisations to initiate talks with POK and Pak governments besides civil society of both the areas. They also said that some talks at individual level were also going on adding the civil society of Kashmir, POK and Pakistan on their own must also initiate a dialogue to discuss the ways and means to preserve historic Shardha Mata temple in Muzafarabad for which a KP delegation can visit both the areas through Uri route as a confidence building measure.

Kashmiri Pandits said that both the central and state governments must understand the gravity of the situation and take immediate steps warning of 3rd Fast Unto-Death at Srinagar in case governments again turn deaf ear to their demands. Prominent among those who participated in today’s historic protest include King Bharati, Social Activist and National Spokesperson APMCC, Som Nath Saraf (Kapal Mochan Trust), Amit Raina, Rashneek Kher, Advocate Arun Kandroo, TK Zutshi, Vimarsh Koul, Manoj Bhat, Ravi Regu, Anil Dhar, Ashish Zutshi, Sandeep Koul, Bal Krishan, Rohit Bhat, Deepak Bhat, Satish ji Bota Gosain and others

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Vinod Pandit (Chairman APMCC) Sanjay Tickoo(President KPSS)