Dawn News

A Hindu woman weeps while seeing off a relative at the railway station. – File photo by INP

ISLAMABAD: A group of Pakistani Hindus arriving in the Indian state of Rajhasthan says that they will not return to their home country, according to a report published by the BBCUrdu.

The group of 171 people arrived in Rajhasthan’s Jodhpur city via the ‘Thar Express’ train on Sunday.

Although the passengers in the group traveled to the Indian state on pilgrimage visas for religious purposes, they claim they will not return to Pakistan.

The Seemant Lok Sangthan (SLS), an organisation for Hindus from Pakistan settled in India, has appealed to the Indian government to grant the group immigrant visas.

According to a spokesman of the organisation, all 171 people in the group have arrived in Jodhpur from Pakistan’s Sindh province, and “they all belong to Sanghar or Hyderabad.”

The group comprises of 32 women and children of whom a majority belong to the low-caste Bheel community of Hindus.

“You can not understand our pain. My father recently passed away; I could not even find a place to perform my father’s last rites,” the BBCUrdu quoted one of the people arriving with the group. “We will not go back to Pakistan. You may kill us if you wish, but we will not return.”

The news follows media reports earlier last month of hundreds of Pakistani Hindu nationals from Sindh allegedly migrating to India over concerns of religious persecution and security fears. A committee was formed by President Asif Ali Zardari to look into the reports of mass migration. However, the committee rejected the claims that members of the minority community were leaving Sindh.

Later in August, authorities in Rajhasthan state announced that around 900 Pakistani Hindus had become eligible to apply for Indian citizenship. The people included those Pakistanis who had traveled to India prior to December 31, 2004 and refused return to their home country.

Comments (67) Closed

Sep 09, 2012 03:20pm
More than 171 migrate to USA, Canada and other countries every year, then why that doesn't become front page news?
Khizar Usmani
Sep 09, 2012 02:18pm
This is Economic Migration. Nothing to do with their religion. A muslim family would have been turned over to the authorities, but these will get all protection if they can cry loud enough.
Sep 11, 2012 05:58pm
That seems to be the purpose.
Sep 10, 2012 06:02pm
they will come india seeking the benefits that a secular life promises, but try to create the same islamic atmosphere in india, once they get the citizenship. i think you can understand what i am referring to.
Sep 11, 2012 02:32am
Look at the track record of muslims abroad. Like England and France. They don't respect the culture of the country to go to, never assimilate and seek to spread there islamic ideology. No respect and only cause troubles.
Sep 11, 2012 02:31am
Or maybe its because Pakistan is a failed state that persecutes minorities with blasphemy laws. Evil needs to be exposed for what it is.
Sep 09, 2012 06:43pm
I wish they applied for an asylum to West where regardless of how lower Hindu caste they belong to they would have been treated as equal citizens. Also in West there would have no state propaganda to face.
A Pakistani Muslim
Sep 11, 2012 04:58am
What a heart wrenching image. What a testimony of intolerant Muslims. What a sad day in the history of Pakistan?
dr vimal raina
Sep 10, 2012 02:10pm
These poor people barely have a cloth on their back. Maybe you should stand up and fight for their rights. As Gandhi said, be the change you want to see in the world. Many many Pakistanis will support YOU (Inshallah)
dr vimal raina
Sep 10, 2012 02:07pm
it doesn't become news because the rich migrate for economic reasons and the poor run for their lives selling their pots and pans.
Sep 09, 2012 03:21pm
All of our hindu brothers are welcome in India.
Farkhanda Shibli
Sep 09, 2012 06:27pm
what a shame...!
Akil Akhtar
Sep 09, 2012 11:18pm
Stay there please.... economic conditions are much better thee these days.
Sep 09, 2012 05:22pm
When did we sink so deep into intolerance? We used to lecture India on its treatments of minorities, and look where we are now. What has happened to us?
Sep 12, 2012 10:07am
Yeah right, Pakistan's image is negative because of these prosecuted minorities and not because of Talibans and other thugs who continuously harass them!! Seriously? Hiding Osama-Bin-Laden does not bring -ve press to Pakistan but Hindus whose daughters and sons are abducted and forcefully converted into the religion-of-peace are to blamed for negative images. Barvo!!
Sep 10, 2012 09:36am
tried to think why?
Sep 09, 2012 03:00pm
Hindus like any other citizen of the country are allowed to live in any country that accepts them. Lots of Pakistanis (Muslims and Hindus alike) are citizens of other countries and if a group of people think they will prosperous in India that it is their right. A lots of Muslims came to Pakistan from India after the partition and are still coming.
Sep 10, 2012 09:35am
un/fortunately that is not going to happen.
Sep 09, 2012 04:14pm
I met folks from Ghotki once who told me similar stories. Its really sad to see them forced to migrate
Sep 09, 2012 04:00pm
pak hindus are our brothers,welcome
Sep 09, 2012 05:35pm
How come no one has commented on this news. Perhaps the picture in the mirror is unbearable.
Sep 09, 2012 03:33pm
why is this happening? India should not take back paksitanis how much ever they are suffering. if we have to tak back hindus we need to send back muslims
Sep 10, 2012 12:31am
I wish best for all these people in India. I am sure they will be accepted by Indian government and have a safer life. Even differect sect of Muslims are not safe in Pakistan and I hope people of Pakistan give more importance to humanity than other stuff.
Feroze K
Sep 09, 2012 09:57pm
Shame on us as Pakistanis treating minorities in such a way that they want to leave the country.Zardari government is always forming committees.Rehman Malick becomes a spokesman and matter is closed.In the name of religion, making citizens an outcast is a crime that all of us should bear the responsibility.
Sep 09, 2012 02:19pm
their own citizens are running away from pakistan...what a shame!! pakistan cannot look after a few hindus...so sad...nation is in a pathetic condition
Sep 09, 2012 02:19pm
This is a sad sad day. These Hindus are as much Pakistani as Gilani, Zardari or any of the other religious extremists. They should stand up and fight for their rights. Many Many Pakistanis will support them (Inshallah)
Sep 09, 2012 02:55pm
I sincerely hope the Indian Govt. would find in its heart the compassion to let these people stay and help them start a new life.
Iqbal khan
Sep 10, 2012 12:53am
If its any consolation Pakistani Muslims are also taking refuge in other countries.
Sep 10, 2012 01:32am
"Give me Liberty, or give me death " is the famous quotation of Patrick Henry. At least 171 Hindu got their religious freedom by migrating to India. I am praying for other unfortunate hindus and ahmadiyya who are deprived of their religious freedom .
Sep 10, 2012 01:49am
Shame on us , we treated our non muslim brothers and sisters so poorly .. This is un islamic. I am sad to learn this news... Muhammad from New Jersey USA
A Muslim
Sep 10, 2012 01:50am
I guess Hindus are lucky in the sense they just have to go next door to take the refuge.Muslims have to struggle a lot to find a country willing to accept them.
Sep 10, 2012 01:56am
Over the last several years India's ecomomy has grown at a much higher rate than Pakistan's and India's future looks a lot brighter than Pakistan's. I am sure economically the Hindus see a much better future in India for themselves than in Pakistan. If their concern was only Islamic fundementalism, then the exodus would have started in the 80s and 90s.
Sep 10, 2012 02:15am
We should ask India to deport them to Pakistan and here they should be tried for treason. Its only because these people our country has a negative image in the world.
Sep 10, 2012 02:27am
India should give asylum also to our Muslim brothers who desire a decent secular life.
Sep 10, 2012 02:54am
A sincere inquiry should be made to establish the fact and necessary measures shall be taken against wrong doers. Human rights shall be given first priority.
Sep 10, 2012 04:34am
Don't get fooled by these report religion got nothing to do with the move. They are leaving Pakistan for economical reason and we should not stop them. If they can find better life in India why not.
Hitesh Kumar
Sep 10, 2012 06:19am
Its a sad news for sustainability of minorities in Pakistan
Sep 10, 2012 06:25am
A suggestion from my end:- Both the countries India and Pakistan should set up a joint committee to decide and allow any citizen wanting to migrate to either country.This will grant people of some justice.This must be a one time practice only and once and for all.Those who can decide to leave must be able to migrate to either country bound by a time frame.
Human Being
Sep 10, 2012 07:45am
Sep 09, 2012 04:34pm
They are welcome. India is country of peace and harmony.
Hasnain Haque
Sep 09, 2012 04:32pm
I am not at all surprised that Hindus wish to leave Pakistan. If given the choice, most of the Pakistanis would leave Pakistan. It's infrastructure and administration have all but broken down and nothing seems to work. The recent case of Rimsha has further highlighted the absurd laws the country has. Is anyone in authority listening in Pakistan, no they are busy looting the country.
Sep 09, 2012 04:31pm
i feel a ashmed, just education is the only way we can save them....you notice they are from Hyderabad/Sanghar...i hope this cant be possible in Karachi..!
Abdullah Hussain
Sep 09, 2012 04:29pm
I think the Indian government should consider the request made by the Hindu devotes, As Hindus they have the right to stay in India which they feel is more convenient for them. When peoples are allowed to stay other foreign countries why these Pakistani Hindus should not exercise their option to stay in India. After getting permanent stay status in India these migrating Hindus should be granted dual nationality if they so desire. Later whenever they visit Pakistan they should have the same warm welcome.
Sep 09, 2012 11:16pm
I srongly recomend the Hindus to come and stay in India and request the Pakistan authorities to show mercy on them by allowing them to leave.
Someone who cares
Sep 09, 2012 05:55pm
Which century are we living in?
Sep 10, 2012 08:37pm
atleast they will have the respect and freedom in india. what a shame, what a shame, Hey Pak Govt. are you even paying attention to this?
Sep 09, 2012 10:00pm
In light of how the minorities are treated in Pakistan, can you blame them for seeking safety and security elsewhere? It is a great shame for Pakistani Nation to lose her citizens under these circumstances. Is ethnic cleansing next or is it already in place???
Sep 09, 2012 03:48pm
So much for all the crocodile tears in Pakistan.
Sep 09, 2012 03:49pm
Lets face it, a democratic, secular, undivided and non-aligned Hind is best. Lets all work towards that.
Binoy Ghoshal
Sep 09, 2012 05:14pm
Welcome home brothers and sisters. Feel free.
Sep 09, 2012 08:20pm
So misleading topic! It says 'dozens' - it should be 'hundreds' - just trying to pretend that its a small number of Hindus that are moving out and all is well in Pakistan - nothing to worry.
Sep 09, 2012 08:25pm
Shame on the democratically elected government for bringing its citizens to such a stressful situation that they would rather die than remain in Pakistan. However bad India may seem to the Pakistanis, India is obviously still a better place to be in.
sparky singh
Sep 09, 2012 04:22pm
Dawn needs to find a new photograph for these Hindu migration stories. Here is to hoping these man made borders will be forgotten one day, and our coming generations remain blissfully unaware of the delusions we lived under.
Sudhir Sahay
Sep 09, 2012 07:25pm
Shame Pakistan & Pakistanis!!!
Faisal Ahmed
Sep 09, 2012 07:30pm
Shame on us. I am ashamed to be a Pakistani
Sep 09, 2012 07:35pm
shame , shame , shame on pakistanis. So sorry minorities. we cannot do you justice yet we call our selves the land of pure.
Sep 09, 2012 04:09pm
What a shame.
Amit Kumar
Sep 09, 2012 05:34pm
The day is not far when all Pakistani minorities will seek refuge in India and other neighbouring countries to save themselves from the wrath of majority.
p kumar
Sep 09, 2012 04:01pm
these hindus were brothers and sisters of these people who now abduct them and force them to leave where they have lived for thousands of years
Sep 09, 2012 03:08pm
I request Dawn not to sensationalize this news report .This would make life even tougher for Hindus still in Pakistan. Also it would only serve serve to heighten the suspicions on the community and provoke violence.
Sep 09, 2012 05:45pm
Please go to India.. Here the country's condition is getting bad .If mullahs play a role in state.. this is what will happen to country people
sankar paul
Sep 09, 2012 06:44pm
The Govt. of Pakistan should save their relagious minority.
dr vimal raina
Sep 10, 2012 02:12pm
So wrong! This is not economic migration but it is a run for life from Bondage. They very well know that in India they will still be labourers but will not be raped or kidnapped. When the sleep on the mud floor at night they will not be worried about someone coming and knocking their door at midnight. This is not economic migration, this is a migration for respect and freedom.
Sep 10, 2012 02:52pm
Can u pls name a single Indian Muslim who is migrating from India to Pakistan in recent times. Be real and wake up they are more than happy living in India with full and equal rights
pk surendran
Sep 10, 2012 03:55am
what a shame, Pak!
Sep 10, 2012 04:01am
Waooo , never seen any indian muslim seeking pakistani citizenship ? Wake up call for Pakistan Govt.
A Pakistani
Sep 12, 2012 08:22pm
Good suggestion, but i'm pretty sure no body will migrate to Pakistan