Srinagar: All Parties Sikh Coordination Committee (APSCC) has demanded inclusion of minorities like Sikhs, Gujjars and Paharis in the consultations being carried out by the Delimitation Commission as part of its exercise in the union territory of Jammu & Kashmir. The Committee has said that the exclusion of minorities is unacceptable and it would be fought tooth and nail by the members of concerned communities.
In a statement, APSCC Chairman Jagmohan Singh Raina said that members of different minorities need to be taken on board by the Delimitation Commission before any decision about the redrawing of assembly constituencies is taken. Raina said that any exercise without the participation of minority community members would be useless and meaningless.
“It is imperative that members of minority communities like Sikhs, Gujjars and Paharis are consulted by the Delimitation Commission since their population is large in many assembly segments. The suggestions put forward by the political parties and minority community members should be put in public domain before any final decision is taken by the Home Ministry,” said the APSCC Chairman.
Raina said that in case members of minority communities are left out in the exercise then they would be constrained to come on roads and lodge protests. He said that minorities have suffered in Jammu & Kashmir time has come to apply balm on their wounds
The APSCC has demanded reservation of three seats in Kashmir and four seats in Jammu division for the Sikh community.
The APSCC Chairman said that once Jammu & Kashmir was reduced to a union territory from state it was expected that the National Minority Act would be applied but that was not to be. He said the minorities continue to suffer in the union territory as they used to be in the erstwhile state of Jammu & Kashmir.