For the second time in a week Kashmiri Sikh community has demanded end of discrimination with the community in the jobs kept reserved for the J&K minorities. In a protest held at Lal Chowk today, the community sought revocation of the SRO-425 under which jobs under minority category have been exclusively reserved for Kashmiri Pandits.
The Sikhs from various districts of Kashmir valley assembled at Pratap Park to press their demand. They held placards with slogans scrawled on them denouncing the injustice allegedly meted out to the community over the years. The slogans went like ‘Stop discrimination with Kashmiri Sikhs’ ‘Stop Favouritism,’ ‘SRO- 425 total injustice with Kashmiri Sikhs,’ and ‘Do Justice of equality’.
The protest was led by the chairman of the All Parties Sikh Coordination Committee (APSCC) Jagmohan Singh Raina. He termed the SRO as part of an effort to deny Sikh community their share in the jobs. He asked the government to amend the SRO so that Sikh community also reaps the job benefits announced by New Delhi.
“Central government had announced a job package for non-migrant minorities in Kashmir. But for four years the government kept the order under wraps and suddenly came up with SRO-425 to benefit Kashmiri Pandits only,” Raina said. “The erstwhile PDP-BJP government altered the job package order to benefit a particular community rather than all minorities who suffered from the turmoil of past 30 years”.
Raina threatened more protests if the order was not revoked at the earliest.
Earlier APSCC in a statement had demanded a high-level probe into various packages announced by successive governments at the Centre for Kashmiri Pandits and alleged that other communities in J&K have been ignored.
“Over the years, it has been observed that the governments in New Delhi have been announcing packages for Kashmiri Pandits and nothing has been done with respect to Muslim and Sikh communities,” Raina said in a statement.
“The SRO (sadr-e-riyasat ordinance) 425 issued in October 2017 by the state government to provide jobs, under the Prime Minister’s package, to Kashmiri Pandits, who have not migrated from the Valley, is an act of gross discrimination against the Sikh community”.