Despite facing problems such as lack of electricity and water for years, the Hindu refugees from Pakistan do not want to leave India as they fear persecution in the Islamic nation, reports DailyO.
According to the report, around 650 Pakistani-origin Hindus are living in camps right behind Majlis-park metro station in Delhi. Despite living there for six years, they reportedly have not been provided with facilities like electricity or water supply.
Around 480 of these Pakistani Hindus came to India in 2013 in a hope for better life by telling the authorities in Pakistan that they are pilgrims and want to go to the Kumbh mela. However, Indian citizenship for these refugees is still a dream after so many years as each one of them is allegedly paying Rs 1,000 per year to get their visas renewed.
The Hindu refugees, despite so many problems, still want to live in India as they feel that they will not be persecuted here.
The Hindus, according to the report, were 22 per cent of the Pakistani population in 1951 but over the years have been reduced to less than 1.6 per cent. They are either forced to convert or live like third-grade citizens.
Balram, a Hindu refugee, was quoted in the report as saying that he could not openly greet anyone saying ‘Jay Shri Ram’ in Sindh province of Pakistan. He said all festivals, from Diwali to Holi, were celebrated indoors. Police would pick them, put in lock up and start beating them without any reason, he said.
The group of refugees alleged that forced conversion was nothing new in Pakistan and that such cases were under-reported. One Hindu refugee Gita Devi was quoted in the report as saying that due to the fear of abduction of Hindu girls in Pakistan, they never stepped out alone in that country.
According to them, Pakistani Hindus had to face the brunt of incidents taking place in India such as the Babri Masjid demolition in 1992. They claim that Hindus will be the target in the Islamic nation should the Indian Supreme Court delivers verdict in favour of Ram Mandir.
The Pakistani Hindus also said that they did not send their kids to schools in Pakistan as Islamic teachings was forced on them.
Jamna, a 44-year-old Hindu refugee, was quoted in the report as saying, 'How could we send our kids to school knowing that Islamic teaching is being given to them? There were no jobs for our kids - the first thing that anyone asked us was, what’s your religion? The moment they came to know we are Hindus, they would turn their backs on us. So, we survived on farm produce. We led lives worse than a dog in Pakistan.”