Minorities demands protection in Pakhtunkhwa

Sikh elders say they are still considered refugees

PESHAWAR – The Sikh community on Monday urged the government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to provide them complete protection as their minority community is being killed and kidnapped without any reason.

The Sikh population was confined to their homes because of insecurity in the provincial metropolis, lamented elders of the community during a seminar here. The seminar – Stop Violence Against Minorities – was organised by the Commission for Peace and Minorities Rights (CPMR).

The seminar was participated by Sikhs, Hindus, Christians and Muslims. Close relatives of the victims of different incidents of killings and kidnapping were present on the occasion. The Sikh elders said that though they had not migrated from India but belongs to this soil of their forefathers.

“Our elders had sacrificed for Pakistan yet they are considered refugees,” they said, and regretted that despite the constitution guaranteed complete rights to the minorities and protection, but none of the governments had implemented it which has put their lives at stake and pushed them into backwardness.

“We are marginalised people as our ancestral property and holy places were occupied by land grabbers,” they said. The governments were not taking steps to retrieve the occupied property from the land mafia and return them to the minorities, said Harun Sarb Diyal, a Hindu leader.

He said that they should be treated as equal citizens. Sikh leader Baba Harmid Singh appealed the government to order the police to provide them security. Civil society members and journalist Shamim Shahid also spoke on the occasion and assured them all help.

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