Maharashtra stands firmly behind the Kashmiri Pandits and will do everything possible to help them, assured Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Saturday.
“For the last few days, targeted killing of Kashmiri Pandits and Hindus has been going on in Kashmir Valley. Within a month, nine Kashmiri Pandits were assassinated. Hundreds of frightened Kashmiri Pandits have started fleeing. The whole country is outraged,” stated a release quoting Mr Thackeray.
Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray expressed grave concern over the situation in the valley.
He said that Kashmiri Pandits are literally on the run in Kashmir Valley. “They were shown dreams of returning home, but on their return home, the Pandits are being picked and killed. In this horrific situation, a large number of Pandits started fleeing, which is a shocking as well as disturbing event,” said Mr Thackeray.
At this juncture, as the Shiv Sena party chief and the Chief Minister of Maharashtra, I can promise that Maharashtra will stand firmly behind the Kashmiri Pandits in these difficult times”, said Mr Thackeray.
When the Shivsena government was formed in Maharashtra in 1995, Shiv Sena chief Balasaheb Thackeray had given reservation in education to the children of Kashmiri Pandits in Maharashtra as a special matter.
Mentioning the Shiv Sena chief has consistently raised his voice for the protection of Kashmiri Pandits, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray said that Maharashtra has always maintained a sensitive relationship with Kashmiri Pandits.
“We consider it our duty and look at it with a sense of duty. We are currently closely monitoring the situation in the valley. Talks are also underway with leaders of Kashmiri Pandits. I repeat we will do everything possible for Kashmiri Pandits. They will not be left in the lurch. Maharashtra will do its duty,” assured the Maharashtra CM.
Meanwhile, Maharashtra Minister Aaditya Thackeray today expressed concern over the situation in Jammu and Kashmir in the aftermath of the recent targeted killings in the union territory and termed the situation ‘deeply concerning’.
He further said that the doors of Maharashtra are always open for Kashmiri Pandits.
Speaking to ANI on the recent killings of Hindus in the Kashmir Valley, Mr Thackeray said, “The situation in Kashmir is deeply concerning. It’s unfortunate that the situation is repeating again. We expect the Government of India to take strong measures to ensure their protection.”
A bank manager, identified as Vijay Kumar, was shot dead outside his office by terrorists in the Kulgam district of Jammu and Kashmir on Thursday.
Earlier this week 36-year-old Hindu woman teacher Rajni Bala, hailing from Jammu’s Samba district, was shot dead by terrorists at a government school in Gopalpora, Kulgam. Last month, two civilians – including Kashmiri Pandit employee Rahul Bhat — and three off-duty policemen were killed in Kashmir by terrorists.