The Narendra Modi-led central government has informed Parliament that there is no record available with the Ministry of Home Affairs to suggest that any Kashmiri Pandit has migrated from the Kashmir Valley since August 5, 2019, the day the Parliament passed a bill to abrogate Article 370 of the Constitution, the provision that granted special status to the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir.
In a written reply of an unstarred question on Wednesday, Nityanand Rai, Minister of State (MoS), Ministry of Home Affairs, said that as per the official records no Kashmiri Pandit has migrated from Kashmir since August 5 2019 till date. Rai was replying to a question raised by Congress leader Digvijaya Singh during the ongoing Monsoon Session seeking data on “Attacks in Jammu and Kashmir and Migration of Kashmiri Pandits”.
In its written response filed in the Rajya Sabha, the MHA stated that the government has a zero-tolerance policy against militants and there has been significant improvement in the security situation in Jammu and Kashmir.
The reply claims significant decline in terrorist attacks in the Kashmir Valley — from 417 attacks in 2018 to 229 attacks in 2021. It further states that from August 5, 2019 to July 9, 2022, there have been a total of 246 casualties, which include 128 security personnel and 118 civilians. Among the civilian casualties, five were Kashmiri Pandits and 16 belonged to the Hindu/Sikh community. However, the reply mentioned that no pilgrim has been killed in the Valley during the said period as per the information available with the Ministry of Home Affairs.
Nityanand Rai, while replying to the sub section (b) and (c) of Digvijaya Singh’s question on the exact numbers of Kashmiri Pandits who were earlier living in other regions of country, and are now resettled in valley, the MoS stated that 5,502 government jobs have been provided to Kashmiri Pandits by the central government in various departments of the J&K state administration under the Prime Minister Development Package (PMDP).
“There’s no reported case of any Kashmiri Pandit migrating from the valley in the said period.” the response adds