New Delhi: The government on Wednesday said the recent migration of 115 Kashmiri Pandit families, mostly women and children, from Kashmir to Jammu was a ”part of movement of officials” and due to winter vacations in educational institutions.
Minister of State for Home Affairs Nityanand Rai was responding in the Rajya Sabha to a question by Naranbhai J Rathwa of the Congress who asked the government whether many Hindus and Sikhs were leaving Srinagar due to rising worries about their safety among other details. ”In October, 2021, approximately 115 Kashmiri Pandit families, mostly women and children, living in Kashmir have moved to Jammu region. These families are of government employees, many of whom, move to Jammu in winter as part of movement of officials and the winter vacation in education institutions,” Rai said in a written reply.
He said an ex-gratia of Rs one lakh is paid to the next of kin of the civilians killed in militancy-related violence under an existing scheme of the Jammu and Kashmir government.
”In addition, Rs 5 lakh is given under the ‘Central Scheme for Assistance to Civilian Victims/Family of Victims of Terrorist/Communal/ LWE Violence and Cross Border Firing and Mine/IED Blasts on the Indian Territory,” he said.
The minister said a robust security and intelligence grid is in place to ensure safety of the minority community in Srinagar.
”In addition to group security in the form of static guards, day and night area domination and patrolling is being carried out in the areas where the minorities reside, besides proactive operations against terrorists,” he said.
In October this year, terrorists targeted a prominent Kashmiri Pandit chemist M L Bindroo, a Sikh government school principal, a Hindu teacher hailing from Jammu and some roadside vendors from Uttar Pradesh and Bihar.