Hindus from Pak strive for Indian citizenship

Members of Hindu families who migrated from Pakistan show their Pakistani passports in Jalandhar. They question if citizenship can be granted to Pakistani singer Adnan Sami, why not them. Tribune Photo: Malkiat Singh

Falak Ram came to India from Pakistan on May 25, 1998, with his family of 10. They moved to Jalandhar and joined 200 other Hindu families who had shifted from Pakistan in 1990. None of these families want to go back.

“I got married in August 2001. I have a schoolgoing daughter. My four sisters and brothers, who came with me, are married and settled here. We now want citizenship rights. If citizenship can be granted to Pakistani singer Adnan Sami, why not us,” asks Falak Ram.

A large number of Hindu families, who came to India on valid visas in the late nineties are settled in Gurdaspur and Jalandhar districts. 

“We applied for citizenship but the Union Government refused to accept our expired passports. To get the passports renewed, we need to go to Pakistan. But we are afraid we will not be allowed to return on our arrival there. We could be punished too,” said Kala Ram, another migrant from Pakistan who resides in Basti Bawa Khel.

“Despite being Hindus, we have not been granted Indian citizenship whereas the government has chosen to oblige Adnan Sami ,” observed a rather bitter Kala Ram. “My children are now in high school. We have built our houses here and have been given gas and power connections,” he said.  Most Hindu migrants are from Sialkot’s Sadra-Badra area in Pakistan. They live in Jalandhar’s Gandhi Camp, Basti Bawa Khel and Bhargo Camp. Some Hindu families have moved on to Rajasthan.

“We have submitted our documents to the Union Government but nothing has materialised so far”, said Falak Ram. Without citizenship, these Hindu migrants cannot buy land or property. Also, they are not allowed to vote.

“Our children were born here and are natural citizens of India. But they face several problems. They are not eligible for a government job”, said Kala Ram, whose parents worked with Pakistan’s sports industry. 

Source : Tribune

Related Tags

Hindu IssuesHindu migrants citizenshipNational

Notice : The source URLs cited in the news/article might be only valid on the date the news/article was published. Most of them may become invalid from a day to a few months later. When a URL fails to work, you may go to the top level of the sources website and search for the news/article.

Disclaimer : The news/article published are collected from various sources and responsibility of news/article lies solely on the source itself. Hindu Janajagruti Samiti (HJS) or its website is not in anyway connected nor it is responsible for the news/article content presented here. ​Opinions expressed in this article are the authors personal opinions. Information, facts or opinions shared by the Author do not reflect the views of HJS and HJS is not responsible or liable for the same. The Author is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article. ​