Indian Muslim Delegation To Visit J&K
21 October 2003
The Times of India
Bangalore: A delegation of Indian Muslims under the banner of National Commission for Minorities (NCM) will visit Jammu and Kashmir on Wednesday and hold talks with various Muslim groups to assist peaceful return of Kashmir Pandits to their homeland. Announcing this here on Tuesday at the NCM conference, NCM chairman Sardar Tarlochan Singh stated that the delegation, headed by former bureaucrat Moosa Raza, would be represented by All India Muslim Personal Law Board and Jamaat-e-Islam. 'They will tour J&K for four days and meet Muslim leaders, including the Hurriyat Conference.' 'The discussion will focus on means and ways to rehabilitate Kashmiri Pandits,' he added. Singh pointed out that Pandits had been reduced to the status of minorities in J&K. 'Unfortunately, the problem that started at the time of Indian independence is yet to be resolved. We are making an honest attempt through dialogue process,' he said. He called upon minorities to accord top priority to education. 'We should stop accusing majority communities of sowing seeds of communal disharmony. The objective is to bring ourselves to the mainstream of society by focussing on education and improving our socio-economic conditions,' he stated. Singh urged minorities to stop projecting themselves as a vote bank. 'All parties try to please us during elections. We should not get carried away by such tactics. Instead, we should ensure all-round growth of minorities,' he said. He praised the track-record of Karnataka in maintaining communal harmony. 'A majority of the South Indian states have not succumbed to the evil designs of communal forces,' Singh noted.