As the provincial and federal governments try to contain the fallout from initial reports that Hindus were leaving the country for India in droves, the Pakistan Hindu Council (PHC) demanded on Saturday that the country would be better served by remembering its founding father’s speech regarding minorities, which he delivered on August 11, 1947.
PHC patron in chief Dr Ramesh Kumar Vankwani also took minority legislators in the country to task, and said that, “They are unaware of issues [facing our communities] at the grassroots level”. He added that these legislators were not elected by the people, but were chosen by their respective political parties.
The PHC head also criticised the Sindh government for ignoring the cases in which Hindus are being kidnapped for ransom and Hindu girls are being forcefully converted in Sindh. “Conversion in the name of marriage is not justified. Hindus don’t want to migrate, but the situation forces them to move,” said Vankwani.
According PHC’s estimate, Hindus constitute nearly 5.5 per cent of the country’s population, 93.33 per cent of whom reside in Sindh. PHC also claims that nearly 17 per cent of Sindh’s population, or 6,842,526 people, are Hindus.
“No Hindu is recovered without paying ransom. While the government rescues a military official within a week, it does not bother to look for a [missing] Hindu for 10 months,” said PHC president Jethanand Doongarmal Kohistani.
“We only demand security. [Most of us] are businessmen, and contribute a lot to the country’s economy. However, a family is torn apart when their girl is kidnapped and then [forcefully] converted,” said PHC’s Seth Jethani Mal.
Minister visits Sukkur
A three-member team headed by federal minister for political affairs Maula Bux Chandio visited Sukkur and met with members of the Hindu community at the Shri Ram Temple on Saturday. Office bearers of Hindu Panchayat and a large number of community members were also present during the meeting.
Chandio, who was flanked by Senator Hari Ram Kishori Lal and MNA Lal Chand, told media personnel that the perception that Hindus were migrating to India on a large scale was wrong. “I have been told by the Hindu Panchayat president that many Hindu families have shifted to Canada, UK and USA, for their children’s higher education and better future, and not because of lawlessness [in Pakistan],” said Chandio.
He said that more than 200 Hindus had left for India during the last few days to visit religious sites. “Hindus go India [from here] throughout the year, visit their sacred sites, and then come back.”
He added that people in Sindh and Balochistan, in particular, and regardless of their religion, were being victimised by criminals. “Muslims and Hindus are both being kidnapped for ransom.” Legislation to deal with the issue of kidnapping and eventual conversion of Hindu girls was under consideration in the National Assembly as well as the Sindh Assembly, added the minister.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 12th, 2012.
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@Aditya Choudhary: even pakistanis in US say they are from India
@Vikas: Indian Muslims know the fact. Pakistan is not the right place to visit for pilgrimage. Thats why they remain in India. Even a Pakistani knows the fact. They migrate to different country and enjoy rather than living a risky life in their native.
in india the prime ministed declared - that the first right on natural resources of the country is of minorities , he means muslims
pakistan will do nothing , the muslims cannot tolerate any minority. forget about equality or justice in islam , even the women are not equal
All hindus should return to India.Mental peace is better than physcal fit.afterall we are brother.Why not Indian government issuing order to comeback india.
14 years old Hindu girl was abducted last week. 250 Hindu families were held up at railway station for 7 hours because Pakistan Government suspected that they may seek asylum in India with whatever they can carry on back and a hand cart.
Even if they do or don’t. They deserve an apology. Will they get it? That answers a litany of questions what happened 60 years ago. Has Pakistan learnt anything? Have we, human elements on both sides of border, learnt anything? This is not Hindu vs. Mussellman, It is Insaan vs. Saitan. Just as important it is to raise voice, with whatever means, and demand that persecuted minorities should have freedom to get Passport, without hindrance or delay from Pakistan Government, It is equally important to raise awareness of the fact that many Pakistanis are disgusted by this evil act.
It is solemn responsibility of Pakistan Government that property of those fleeing persecution is protected in safekeeping. If the evil element try to speed up “purification” process keeping an eye for taking over the property, Pakistan would be left only as an pure evil entity.
@Raj-USA: Yes we have so many problems in sindh pakistan, but whatever you are stating is not correct. They don't treat us as untouchables. Of course we come across with mental and verbal harassment, kidnapping for ransom, kidnapping girls for teasing, attacks on temples, looting and etc . But No untouchability problem. Sindh has become sandwich between fanatics and sufi-liberal people. This time fanatics are in winning position!!!
Bottom line is; A majority which is incapable of protecting its own members, can not protect the minority. In Pakistan everyone is fending for himself.
@Aditya Choudhary: one of my class fellows who is a Hindu got admission in MIT...
@ Aditiya Chaudry,
a good number sindhi hindus from Pakistan are living in New york, most of them are doctors , i think they must be identifying themselves as indians. the claim in the news that they might be going to US or Canada is Rubbish , how many families can afford to migrate to these countries?
no mention of force conversion of young hindu girls?
@Aditya Choudhary: You are correct as Pakistani Muslims hardly meet anyone other than Pakistani Muslims, not even Bangladeshi Muslims. If you need to meet the Hindus, you can see them in so any of the several Hindu temples or Indian shopping areas usually dubbed "Little India". Some Pakistani Muslims have said that they have Hindu friends. I shall believe it only if someone shows a photo from their friends / family album showing them with a Hindu or sipping a cup of tea with them. Even Mr. Chando, who visited the Hindu Temple would have have sipped a cup of tea with the Hindus at the Temple as Muslims do not share the same table with Hindus even in public restaurants in Pakistan.
“I have been told by the Hindu Panchayat president that many Hindu families have shifted to Canada, UK and USA, for their children’s higher education and better future, and not because of lawlessness [in Pakistan],” said Chandio.
That explains it: BETTER FUTURE which is not for the minorities in this country.
even if they are there, they would identify themselves as Indians. instead of as Pakistanis.
I don't understand one thing. When Hindus from Pakistan are coming to India, then why don't Muslims from India go to Pakistan.
Although its good that we are paying attention to someone's problems but its not really a minority rights issue. Pakistan government has also failed to provide security to the majority.
The dirt is finally coming out in the open.
I am yet to meet a single Pakistani hindu in US where i have been living from the last 3 years. I have lived at California,Houston and NewYork where traditionally the largest Indian and Pakistani diaspora resides and met scores of Pakistanis but not a single Pakistani Hindu. It's a lie being propagated that these families are moving to US.