Union HM gets feedback about post Article 370 situation from delegations in Sgr

Gujjar-Bakarwals, Paharis, Sikhs meet Amit Shah; Demands of jobs, reservations, ST status for Sikhs raised; Paharis extend gratitude to Govt for resolving seven-decade-old issue

Srinagar: As the Union Home Minister Amit Shah arrived Srinagar on Thursday evening, several delegations of Gujjar-Bakarwals, Paharis and Sikh communities here met him at SKICC, where the communities raised their demands with regard to the jobs, reservations and other related things.

Talking exclusively with the news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO), the participants said that the delegations called on Amit Shah and discussed several issues in a cordial atmosphere.

A member from Gujjar-Bakerwal community from South Kashmir, Ahmad Bin Bumla told KNO that the Union Home Minister sought feedback from them about the post-Article 370 situation.

“We also discussed several issues and put forth our demands,” he said, adding that the issue of development, Scheduled Tribe status given to Paharis and other issues were also discussed during the meeting.

Shahbaz Peer, another member of the delegation told KNO that three delegations comprising 150 members from the community have met the Union Home Minister, adding that they put forth the demands like special recruitment for ST community, spread of private sector to ensure more jobs for the youth from the community. “We were assured that all the issues and demands raised by us will be looked into,” Peer said.

A member from the Sikh community, Engineer Nirmal Singh told KNO that a delegation comprising nearly 60 members met the Union Home Minister this evening and raised several demands.

“We demanded a special package for employment like the way minorities have been given here. Besides, we also demanded the establishment of a minority commission and also ST status for the community,” Singh said, adding that they have been told that the demands will be looked into, but the Home Minister has sought some time according to him for redressing their grievances and fulfilling their demands.

In a meeting with Home Minister Amit Shah, one of the members of Gujjar-Bakerwal delegation from north Kashmir, Ghulam Mohammad Khatana said that they discussed only the Schedule Tribe (ST) issue.

“People belonging to ST were unhappy earlier for cutting-off their reservation and giving it to Paharis. However, the delegations of Gujjar-Bakarwals were assured that the 10 per cent reservation for them hasn’t been fiddled with,” he said.

Khatana said that HM assured that Paharis were given different reservation quotas and the reservation for Gujjar-Bakerwal was still there.

“Besides, the Gujjar-Bakerwal delegation was told that they can elect their own Member of Legislative Assembly (MLA) in the upcoming assembly elections,” he said.

In the meeting with HM, the Gujjar-Bakerwal delegation further informed HM that the community was facing electricity and other basic issues.

Meanwhile, one of the members of the Pahari delegation from north Kashmir, Mohd Younis Sheikh said that the community thanked HIM for the reservation to the community. “In the meeting, we thanked Home Minister Amit Shah for his support to the Pahari community. This was the main agenda of our delegation,” he said.

The Pahari community members from South Kashmir also stated that they thanked the Union Home Minister for resolving their long pending issue. “The issue that continued to linger for the last seven decades has been resolved for which we thanked him and also told him that the community is indebted to the government for resolving this grave issue,” Syed Akhter Hussain, a member from South Kashmir’s Pahari community delegation, told KNO.

“The way our demands have been respected, we are ready to respect the government by following its every decision,” he said.

Pertinently, Amit Shah arrived in Srinagar amid tight security arrangements this evening and met several delegations. The Union Home Minister is scheduled to spend a night here only and will be leaving early tomorrow

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