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Kashmiri Pandits threaten 'fast unto death'
Wednesday June 4, 2014 3:09 PM, IANS

Dozens of migrant Kashmiri Pandits Wednesday held a peaceful protest here against what they called callous attitude of the central and state governments towards their problems.

Shouting slogans against the central and the state governments, representatives of All Parties Migrants Coordination Committee (APMCC), Jammu and Kashmir, told reporters that if their demands are not fulfilled, they would "sit on fast unto death" during the Janmashtami festival Aug 17.

The six-point charter of demands of the migrant Pandits includes re-drafting of the pending Kashmir temples and shrines bill in the state assembly, and probe into encroachment of shrine and temple lands in Kashmir Valley.

Besides, the Psndits also want a dialogue with Pakistan for facilitating their visit to the Sharda Peeth temple in the Pakistan-administered Kashmir, establishment of Sharda Peeth University in the state, and a special employment package for the unemployed youths of the community.

The representatives showed a 2013 letter of state Rehabilitation Minister A.A. Khan, requesting one of their members, Vinod Pandita, to end his fast-unto-death, undertaken in Porbandar (Gujarat) to press for the demands.

"The minister had assured in writing in 2013 that our demands were being considered, but even after that nothing has happened," a representative of the Pandits said.

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