Border Gujjars Seek Rehabilitation, Say They Suffer Too Frequently

Gujjars carrying an injured animal to a veterinary near Tatakuti in Pir Panchal range.
Gujjars carrying an injured animal to a veterinary near Tatakuti in Pir Panchal range.

KL NEWS NETWORK

SRINAGAR

The Gujjar and Bakerwal Communities have asked J&K government to formulate a broad based rehabilitation plan  for tribal people  living on Indo-Pak border  and shift them along with their animals to  safer areas  in Poonch, Rajouri, Jammu , Samba and Kathua districts permanently. The  community  made this appeal through  Tribal Research & Cultural Foundation a main body of Gujjars of  state who are facing heavy exchange of shelling and firing in different border areas in the wake of surgical strikes carried out by the Indian Army a month ago.

In a community meeting held under the chairmanship of Dr Javaid Rahi the participants stated that the District administrations  should device a long term plan of relocation of  border tribes instead of advising them  to evacuate  their  native villages on day to day bases in view of cross border firing.

“Due to heaving firings our Tribal and their livestock get killed every year  near the border in large number  but  now this sould must be ended and they  must be rehabilitated permanently .

Gujjars Bakerwals constitute a significant percentgae of J&K population and occupy frontier areas along the border from Poonch to Lakhanpur and Uri Karnah to Gurz and Kargil.

“In view of their difficult nomadic life the Government of India granted them Schedule Tribe status in 1991 in J&K,”.

“During last one year, around 10 members of the tribal Gujjars community have been killed and hundreds others injured in the shelling and firing along the LoC and IB in Jammu and Poonch districts, triggering migration of about 16000 people from the border hamlets,” the speaker said.

They asserted that during the 1947, 1965 and 1971 wars, the Gujjars faced the major brunt as they were killed in large number along the LOC and the International Border

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