Arvind Kejriwal slams Modi government, says it failed Kashmiri Pandits
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Sunday held a protest in the national capital against the Centre following an increase in targeted killings in Jammu and Kashmir. The protest was held at the iconic Jantar Mantar, a focal point for protests in the city. While slamming the central government, Kejriwal said the BJP-led Centre has failed the Kashmiri Pandits.
Why does this story matter?
- The Kashmir Valley has been facing a spike in civilian killings over the last few months.
- The Valley has witnessed nearly 20 targeted killings, including those of police officials, teachers, and sarpanches recently.
- The terrorists mainly targeted Kashmiri Pandits and laborers from outside Jammu & Kashmir (J&K).
- Union Home Affairs Minister Amit Shah had convened the emergency meetings to discuss the security in J&K.
What did Kejriwal say during the protest?
"When Kashmiri Pandits protest against the targeted killings, the present BJP government in Kashmir does not allow them to protest. If the government behaves like this, the suffering of the people becomes double," Kejriwal said. He said the BJP government has failed the community. Kejriwal went on to say that Kashmiri Pandits do not want meetings with the Centre but rather an immediate action.
Kejriwal puts four demands before Centre
Kejriwal also made four demands to the Centre in response to the Valley's targeted killings. The demands include an action plan to prevent such incidents, the cancellation of bonds signed with Kashmiri Pandits that state they cannot work outside Kashmir, the fulfillment of all their demands, and the provision of security. Kejriwal also cautioned Pakistan to cease using petty methods.
What did the AAP tweet earlier?
"AAP National Convenor & Hon'ble CM of Delhi Shri @ArvindKejriwal will address the Jan Aakrosh Rally against the killing & exodus of Kashmiri Pandits, today at Jantar-Mantar at 12:15 PM (sic)," the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) had tweeted on Sunday morning. The party targeted the Modi government in another post and said, "This is a direct attack on the incompetence of the Modi government".
What do opposition parties say?
Meanwhile, the opposition parties, including the Congress, have slammed the Centre over the killings. They alleged that the government had failed to provide security to Kashmiri Pandits forcing them out of the valley. Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray also criticized the BJP-led central government for putting the community in the line of fire and failing to bring them back to their homes as promised.
'Kashmiri Pandits shown 'ghar vapasi' dream, but are being killed'
"We will do whatever is possible for Kashmiri Pandits, we will not leave them in the lurch. As Shiv Sena chief and Maharashtra chief minister, I can only promise that Maharashtra will stand firmly behind the Kashmiri Pandits in these difficult times," Thackeray said in a statement. He said Kashmiri Pandits were shown the dream of "ghar vapasi," but are being targeted and killed.
Killing spree goes on unabated
On Wednesday, terrorists killed a Hindu bank manager in his office in Kulgam. Hours later, two migrant laborers were shot in central Kashmir. One of them died in the hospital. Terrorists also killed a Hindu school teacher on Tuesday. The week before last, terrorists also shot dead three off-duty police officers and a television actress, all of whom were Muslims, in three separate incidents.
How did Centre respond to the killings?
In high-level meetings chaired by Home Minister Shah, it was decided that Kashmiri Pandits would not be sent out of Kashmir but rather be accommodated in safer places. As per officials, the Centre cannot be a part of "ethnic cleansing" as it believes in a society with diverse cultures. The community has demanded that the government should ensure their security or relocate them.