SRINAGAR: Condemning the recent attack on Kashmiri traders in Shimla, the Kashmir Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) on Tuesday asked Prime Minister Narendra Modi to take note of the incident and asked J&K Governor Satya Pal Malik to depute a special team to go to Shimla to assess the traders’ losses.
Speaking to reporters here, KCCI President Sheikh Ashiq said that miscreants armed with hammers, sticks and iron rods reportedly broke shutters of shops and looted and ransacked goods belonging to Kashmiris in Shimla.
“We demand that the governor depute a high-level special team, including representatives from the KCCI, to go to Shimla to assess the losses and to ensure that the lives and property of Kashmiri traders are safe and secure,” said Ashiq.
“This will ensure the guilty are booked under stringent laws. Prime Minster Narendra Modi should also take note of the Shimla incident,” he said. Ashiq alleged that Kashmiri businessmen operating outside the state have been selectively targeted through videos on social media. It has not only put the lives of Kashmiri businessmen at risk but also affected their business, he said.
“To our knowledge, no investigation or action has been taken in any of the incidents. A hostile environment is being created and attempts are being made to stoke sectarian violence in various places across the country. It is strange that no action has been taken despite provocative videos available (on social media). This shows how goons are patronised by the state,” the KCCI president said.
Ashiq mentioned a victim’s name as Ghulam Muhammad, who suffered damages to three of his shops and had his goods looted. Ashiq asked the Jammu and Kashmir Police to register FIRs and take legal action against people indulging in hate speeches and freely spewing venom on social media against members of the Kashmiri business community.