The protest by Kashmiri Pandit employees after the target killing of their colleague Rahul Bhat completed 70 days on Thursday, even as they continue to hold sit-ins at various places in the valley to press for their demand of relocation.
The protest by the employees started on May 12 when Bhat — who had got the job of a clerk under the special employment package for displaced Kashmiri Pandits — was killed by militants inside the Tehsil office in Chadoora town in Budgam district of central Kashmir on May 12.
Demanding justice, Kashmiri Pandits employed under the PM’s package have been holding protests since then.
The employees have been holding sit-ins at various places in the valley and demanding their relocation outside the valley.
The employees – along with their families – have been sitting on the roadside in Vessu area of south Kashmir’s Anantnag district and at other places demanding their relocation in the wake of spurt in target killings.
The fear-stricken employees have appealed to the J-K administration as well as the Centre to relocate them outside the valley, saying their protests will continue till the government acts.
“We should either be relocated or the administration should give them a breathing time till zero militancy is achieved in the valley,” they said.
“Until the target killings do not stop, we will not go to our offices. The administration should take steps for our safety and security,” the Kashmir Pandit employees said.
The employees have rejected the government’s decision to shift them to district and tehsil headquarters within the valley and have been sticking to their demand for relocation.
Terming the situation of the employees as worrisome, National Conference (NC) pandit leader Umesh Talashi said, “Unfortunately the plight of #KashmiriPandits under current regime has worsened more.The KP employee families are living on roads in #Kashmir Valley.Received many distress calls from Vessue Migrant Camp.Urge HLG @manojsinha_ Sb to address this issue at earliest.Worrisome situation (sic),” Talashi said in a tweet and also posted videos of protesting employees.
He said the issue needs to be addressed on priority.
“They can’t be left to live like this on roads where they are vulnerable to attacks,” he added.–(PTI)