Sikhs, Hindus protest outside Pakistan High Commission in New Delhi

May 20th, 2009 - 10:28 pm ICT by ANI  

Taliban New Delhi, May 20 (ANI): Scores of Sikhs and Hindus took to streets and staged a protest outside the Pakistan High Commission in New Delhi against the excesses of Taliban in Pakistan against minorities.

Organised jointly by the World Hindu Federation and Sikh organisations, the protest witnessed the agitated protestors holding placards and shouting slogans against the Taliban.

Protestors said that the Taliban was causing atrocities on hundreds of Sikh families by imposing Jazia (religious tax) on non-Muslims and forcing them to abandon their homes and hearth.

“Taliban is collecting Jazia money from Sikh community. Besides, they (Taliban) have forced Sikhs to flee from their homes and members of the Sikh community residing in Pakistan are also facing lot of other problems. We have organised this protest to condemn these atrocities,” said Surendranath, a protestor.

The protestors also demanded that the Government of India should intervene and safeguard the Sikhs’ welfare in Pakistan.

“Our next step is to meet the Prime Minister. Once he resumes his office, we will go and ask him to take some action on this issue,” said Surinder Singh, another protestor.

Meanwhile, a delegation of the protestors submitted a memorandum to the Pakistan High Commissioner.

Reportedly, the Taliban had asked 30-35 families of the region to pay 50 million rupees as Jazia and protection money.

Consequently, many tribal families have started migrating to different parts of Hangu and Kohat out of fear of the Taliban action.

The Taliban outfits had 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 is a tax imposed on non-Muslims for their protection that prevailed during the Mughal era. (ANI)

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