HYDERABAD, March 23: Awami Tehrik President Ayaz Latif Palijo said on Wednesday that Hindus and Christians should be given equal rights and they should not be referred to as minorities or scheduled caste.

Addressing a big Holi function organised after several years by Sindhi Hindu Sujaag Tehrik at Sindh Museum which was also attended by a large number of Muslim women and children, Mr Palijo said that all religions preached peace, love and tolerance and Sindhi people would never accept extremism.

He said that history would never forgive those who had forced tens of thousands of Hindus to migrate from Sindh. Sindhi Hindus are natives of Sindh and they have been living here since thousands of years, he said, adding that Sindhi Muslims had always shared their joys and sorrows with Hindus.

He said the upper class of Sindh had always been opportunist and demanded that the Waderas who were responsible for the murder of Bhagat Kanwar Ram should tender an apology to Sindhi people.

MPA Chetan Mal said that despite hardships, Hindus would not leave Sindh.

A journalist Satram Maheshwari said that such programmes would go a long way in creating Hindu-Muslim harmony. Other political parties should emulate the AT in bringing Hindus in to the mainstream.

Another journalist Akash Santwai said that Hindus were being discriminated against in Sindh and upper class Hindus were controlling Hindu Panchayats.

Sindhi Hindu Sujaag Tehrik President Hero Mal and Sindhiani Tehrik leader Dr Sindhu Manganhar also spoke at the function, which adopted a number of resolutions, demanding equal rights for the minorities and discouraging the words minorities and scheduled caste.

A resolution demanded that the minimum age for conversion to other religion should be fixed at 18 years and public holidays should be declared on all religious occasions.

Majority of the participants were workers of Awami Tehrik.