BJP MLC demands constitution of welfare board for Kashmiri Pandits

20 Nov 2017

BJP MLC G L Raina today called on Jammu and Kashmir Governor N N Vohra and demanded the constitution of a "welfare board" for displaced Kashmiri Pandits (KP) in the state.

The MLC, in a memorandum to Vohra, also batted for the removal of alleged encroachments on properties of the community and their places of worships in Kashmir. "Displaced Kashmiri Pandits are the greatest stakeholders in their rehabilitation in Kashmir. Therefore, it is they who must have the maximum say in deciding the modalities for their return to Kashmir. Hence, it would be appropriate that the state government puts in place a mechanism, which engages the community in regular dialogue, to work out the agreed principles of their return," Raina said.

The BJP MLC said: "One way of achieving it is to have a Kashmiri Pandit Welfare Board on the lines of the Gujjar or the Pahari boards with representatives from different districts and a chairman to look after the issues of the community". Raina alleged that there was a systematic exclusion of minorities in the state through social, economic and political marginalisation and discrimination. The MLC said that there was an urgent need to ensure universally accepted norms of equity and justice.

"To achieve this, is to have in place constitutionally entrenched measures that recognise minorities' existence and seek to address key structural disadvantages they experience, vital to, and effective in, promoting their well-being and inclusion," he said.