West Pakistan refugee enters fray in Jammu and Kashmir

March 28th, 2009 - 9:54 pm ICT by IANS  

Jammu, March 28 (IANS) A Pakistani refugee will be contesting Lok Sabha elections as an independent candidate in Jammu and Kashmir, a first in the post-Independence history of the state.
Labba Ram, chairman of West Pakistan Refugees Action Committee, filed his nominations for Jammu-Poonch parliamentary seat Saturday.

Hindu refugees from West Pakistan, settled in Jammu, have a right to vote in the parliamentary polls. But they have no franchise for the assembly, municipal or Panchayat polls because they are not considered the state subjects of Jammu and Kashmir.

They have no citizenship rights in the state despite being citizens of India.

“We have been buried under pile of miseries and that’s why we have decided to raise our voice in parliament now,” said Ram.

“No party has honoured its commitment towards us. We are still homeless, landless and without jobs and education.”

“I am sure all those who believe in the sense of justice would vote for me,” he said.

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