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'Would Rather Work Elsewhere, Cannot Die for Rs 50,000': Kashmiri Pandits

After a sudden rise in targeted killings in the valley, Kashmiri Pandits are leaving their homes.

Updated
My Report
3 min read

(Since you have taken an interest in reading about Kashmir, I have a request for you. The Quint has been working on a documentary regarding the plight of Kashmiri Pandits. We would be grateful if you could support our upcoming special project, 'Uprooted - Stories of Kashmiri Pandits' .)

Video Producer: Varsha Rani

Video Editor: Prajjwal Kumar

After a sudden rise in targeted killings in the Valley, we, the Kashmiri Pandits, are leaving our homeland. The Valley has become unsafe for us and our families.

Living here in Kashmir is something we cannot think about now it’s like living in the 90s again. We came here with so much hope, thinking we were born here, our families lived here, Kashmir is ours, but I don’t think this can continue any longer because everything is so different now... We are living in fear.

Kashmiri Pandits living in fear.

(Image courtesy: Chetan Bhakuni/The Quint)

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I came here along with my family under a special PM package in 2017, and joined my job. But over the last few months, there have been targeted killings of minorities here, and we are living in fear because of that.

The Kashmiri Pandits who were living here have already left the place. Some continued staying here because their children are studying but they are also planning to leave in a day or two.

If I talk about the Kashmiri Pandits who came here under the special PM package, then hardly 5-10 percent of them are still here. Apart from them, everyone has left already.

Kashmiri Pandits came back to Kashmir with a hope to start afresh.

(Image courtesy: Chetan Bhakuni/The Quint)

The situation is getting worse day by day. It's like our lives have no value. We returned here with the hope that the situation has improved. Is it our fault they are doing this to us? I came here in 2010 to earn a livelihood. I am upset with those who promised us a safe and secure environment in Kashmir on our return. Why are they silent now?
Kashmiri pandit
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'We See a Bleak Future, Help Us Relocate'

The current situation that we are in has forced us to leave Kashmir. Look at how minorities are being killed. This is the reason we are leaving. We want to go to a safer place.

Everyone here is scared now. Everything was going fine until now. Suddenly, everything has changed for us.

We don’t know if we will come back alive if we go out. Offices are closed now but we are scared to even go out to get our groceries or medicines. Our children have also stopped going to school because you never know what will happen.

Kashmiri Pandits in distress.

(Image courtesy: Chetan Bhakuni/The Quint)

We see a bleak future for our kids in Kashmir. It has affected our lives to a deep extent. We are clueless about what will happen to our jobs, our children’s education, and our livelihood.

Regarding help from government officials, we had kept one demand from Day 1 and that is re-location; relocation to a safer place outside Kashmir Valley because we are not feeling safe here anymore.

We have been waiting for a response from the administration but they are taking longer than usual. In case the government doesn’t come up with concrete steps, we will have to leave for Jammu, where we were living. I think leaving is the only option we are left with.

(My Report' branded stories are submitted by citizen journalists to The Quint. Though The Quint inquires into the claims/allegations from all parties before publishing, the report and the views expressed above are the citizen journalist's own. The Quint neither endorses, nor is responsible for the same.)

(Since you have taken an interest in reading about Kashmir, I have a request for you. The Quint has been working on a documentary regarding the plight of Kashmiri Pandits. We would be grateful if you could support our upcoming special project, 'Uprooted - Stories of Kashmiri Pandits' - Anthony S Rozario, Associate Editor, Special Projects.)

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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Published: 
Edited By :Padmashree Pande
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