Members of a group of 56 Hindu pilgrims from Pakistan, unwilling to go back from Uttarakhand due to the fear of persecution there, want the Government of India to extend their visa limit of a month. Members of the group have said that they want to be given Indian citizenship under the Citizenship Amendment Act 2019.
According to this report, a member of the group said that they were in ‘no position’ to go back as ‘the Pakistani authorities did not allow us to bring enough money’. He added that they face ‘ruthless persecution’ in Pakistan and ‘were snatched’ of everything. The members of the group have said that they request the Indian government for shelter and for citizenship.
An unnamed official is quoted in the report as saying that the state government can do something once ‘the application is filed.’ The state authorities are keeping a close watch on the situation.
Many of the Pakistani Hindus visiting India prefer a trip to Haridwar, which is a revered destination for them. One of the woman pilgrims has been quoted as saying:
Locals have come to the rescue of the Hindus visiting from Pakistan and have provided them basics, including clothes, money and essentials.
According to the report, ‘the state government has identified a total of 200 Hindu refugees from Pakistan who will be granted citizenship under newly passed Citizenship Amendment Act.’
State cabinet minister Madan Kaushik was quoted as saying in this report:
Just as in Rajasthan, Delhi, and other parts, the visiting Hindus from Pakistan take up odd jobs to sustain life.
They wait for bettering their lives and for citizenship, Pakistani Hindus in India have said. The fear of returning to Pakistan and the persisting persecution in the Islamic Republic, observers point, makes them ready to face survival-related hardships in India.
A dip in the Ganga is one of the most awaited events in the lives of Hindus from Pakistan, pilgrims from the country who have stayed back in India to find refuge have said. Many of these pilgrims have welcomed the CAA.
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