Backing the separatist leaders of Kashmir who oppose the government’s ‘plan’ to create separate settlements for Kashmiri Pandits, renowned Hindu scholar Swami Agnivesh Saturday said that intelligent Kashmiri Pandits will like to settle in separate settlements if they return back to Valley.
“The world is watching keenly what happens in Kashmir. When people of Kashmir are welcoming the return of Kashmiri Pandits then question of creating separate enclaves should be out of question. Instead of creating misunderstanding between the Muslim and Pandit communities, the government should find ways and means to develop harmony and trust between the two. The government of India must shun the idea of ‘Composite Township’ and should encourage Pandits to live side by side with the Muslim population in Kashmir,” Agnivesh told CNS.
Lauding the nature and hospitality of Kashmiri People, Agnivesh said that nowhere in India except Kashmir, a majority community (Hindus) welcome the return and rehabilitation of the exiled minority community.
“In Muzaffarnagar, or Assam and also of Gujarat, where following communal riots and violence, the minority community was shunted out. Even now, they have not been able to return to their homes out of fear. We must give full credit to the people of Kashmir that despite living under threat and fear all these years alone, they still welcome the return of Pandits and are eager to embrace them,” he said.
Swami Agnivesh said that it is remarkable that the only point on which there is complete consensus among mainstream political and separatist camps in Kashmir is on the return of displaced Kashmiri Pandits back to the valley.
“I do not see a parallel of this incredible gesture anywhere in the history of contemporary India. There is no initiative by the Hindus in Muzaffarnagar or elsewhere to welcome the displaced Muslims of their neighbourhood back in their homes,” he said.
“Separatist are right when they oppose the government move to settle these Pandits in separate colonies. These Pandits need to settle in their respective areas. Government should facilitate Muslims to meet the Pandits of their respective areas and encourage them to settle at their ancestral places,” Agnivesh said.