SRINAGAR: Members of the Gujjar community gathered in a place called Budi-Namble, Dardpora, Kupwara, to protest against the Forest Department and Police Department.
They were upset because these departments did not file complaints (FIRs) against the people who burned down their Dokhs (huts), which are important shelters for both people and livestock. The Gujjar community also held a peaceful protest in Srinagar’s press colony.
They criticised SHO Kralpora for not filing a complaint against the protesters. They accused the Forest Department officials of not taking action and allowing repairs of the abandoned Dokhs. The community demanded justice for their loss of property and safety. They were disappointed with the authorities’ lack of action in finding the culprits who committed this terrible act.
The Gujjar community depends on pastoral practices for their livelihood, and the burning of their Dokhs has left them feeling helpless and vulnerable. They believe that the Forest Department and Police Department have not taken this matter seriously and have not done enough to find and punish those responsible.
The community members have asked the Forest Department and Police Department to act quickly and file complaints against the culprits. They have also requested the government to compensate them for their losses and provide the necessary support and assistance to rebuild or repair their Dokhs.
During the protest, the Gujjar community members chanted slogans and held signs, demanding justice for their community. They are determined to continue their fight until justice is served and the culprits are brought to justice.
The incident has shocked many people, and the Forest Rights Coalition-J&K has expressed its full support for the Gujjar community in their quest for justice. Zahid Parwaz, the Convenor of FRC-J&K, stated this.
FRC-J&K is a group of organizations working for the rights of tribes and pastoral communities in J&K.
Advocate Naveed Bukhtiyar, the General Secretary of the Forest Rights Coalition, has assured the protestors of legal assistance. He has also asked the District Legal Services Authority (DLSA) in Kupwara to provide legal help to the community, as they are facing ongoing threats. He has requested the intervention of the LG Administration as well.