Protests in Kashmir over atrocities against Sikhs in Pakistan

May 15th, 2009 - 2:07 pm ICT by ANI  

Taliban Poonch (J-K), May 15 (ANI): Hundreds of Sikh, Hindu and Muslim devotees took out a protest march in Jammu and Kashmir’s Poonch district against the excesses of the Taliban in Pakistan and urged the international community to take note of it.

Holding placards and raising slogans against Taliban, the protesters hit the streets and blocked traffic near Gurdwara Singh Sabha.

“A protest was taken out by the members and leaders of all religious communities here against the barbaric acts of Taliban in Swat valley. All have condemned the atrocities, ” said Narendra Singh, President, Gurudwara Prabandhak Committee.

The protestors said the Indian government along with the international community should view the situation as a serious infringement on human rights by the Taliban.

Thousands of people, including many from the minority Sikh community, have fled Pakistan’s Swat Valley, as government troops battle Taliban fighters after a February peace pact to end violence in the valley collapsed.

Indian Sikhs say the government in Pakistan was doing little to protect the lives of Sikhs.Reportedly, the Taliban outfits demolished at least 11 houses belonging to the Sikh community in the Orakzai Agency of the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) in Pakistan after they refused to pay ‘Jazia’.

‘Jazia’ was a tax imposed on non-Muslims for their protection that prevailed during the Mughal era. (ANI)

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