Kashmiri Prodigals Wanting To Return To India Harassed By Pak Officials

Kashmiri Prodigals Wanting To Return To India Harassed By Pak Officials

3 May 2012
IANS


Jammu: There are growing incidents of clashes between militants wanting to return to Jammu and Kashmir from training camps in Pakistan and those wanting to stay on, intelligence sources say. “Recently two Kashmiri militants desirous of returning home from the Bagh training camp opposite Uri sector of the Kashmir Valley got killed in clashes with those who wanted to stay put,” a source said. The sources added that those showing a desire to return to India were under strict vigilance. There was also growing resentment due to ill treatment of the Kashmiri youths in the training camps. Indian Army sources say there are about 2,500 militants in various training camps in Pakistani Kashmir. There are over 40 such camps on the other side of Line of Control (LoC). The Jammu and Kashmir government had notified in November 2010 a rehabilitation policy for militants willing to shun violence and return to the Valley. The state has received over 1,000 applications under this policy. Chief Minister Omar Abdullah has said that 67 cases have been recommended for return while others were under process. According to Abdullah, many of those in Pakistani training camps had fled Jammu and Kashmir between January 1989 and December 2009. The father of one Kashmiri young man who wants to return to the Kashmir Valley expressed disgust over red tape. “It is such a cumbersome and lengthy process that our children are frustrated. Also, once the officials (in Pakistan) know the identity of those willing to return, they harass and beat them.” A police officer agreed that the process of verification was long and this was forcing frustrated youths now in Pakistan to resort to illegal ways to return. Recently, nine such militants who had escaped from one of the camps in Pakistan were arrested along with their Pakistani wives and 20 children from Sonouli in Uttar Pradesh on the India-Nepal border. All of them were on their way to the Kashmir Valley. According to official policy, all applications for returning to India will be scrutinized by superintendents of police before these get the final clearance from a high-level committee.