Refugees Front Launches Hunger Strike In J&K

2 June 2008

Jammu: The Jammu and Kashmir Refugees Front today launched a hunger strike demanding rehabilitation of 15 lakh refugees of 1947, 1965 and 1971 Indo-Pak conflicts in the state. The refugees, led by Front president Capt Yudhvir Singh, held demonstrations outside the office of Divisional Commissioner and shouted slogans against the state government. They criticised Prime Minister Manmohan Singh for announcing Rs 50 crore package for the settlement of over 15 lakh refugees in the rally at Akhnoor. 'It was insulting to announce Rs 1600 crore package for the Kashmiri migrants in the rally where seventy per cent of the gathering was from refugee community. It was just to rub salt into their wounds by announcing Rs 50 crore for refugees, who are struggling for the last several decades,' Singh said. Capt Singh said the refugees have now resolved to intensify their agitation and the hunger strike would be indefinite. He also alleged that all the Kashmir-dominated political parties, including PDP and NC, were against rehabilitation of the refugees. As a part of their agitation, the Front had also tried to cross over to Chhamb sector in Pakistan from Pallanwalla area of Akhnoor sector last week.