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Why Homeland?

 
   
What claim does the exiled community have for a Homeland?
If I die in exile
think this of me
that there is a corner
out there in Kashmir
that was for ever my abode,
where my soul will come to rest.
- Dr. K.L. Choudhary
The Kashmiri Hindu is the original inhabitant of the valley of Kashmir ever since the birth of the valley by divine intervention when Kashypa Rishi materialized it from a huge lake. He has a history of more than five thousand years of continuous habibtion. Raj Tarangni, to be highlighted the first historical record of ancient India, was written by a Kashmiri Pandit Kalhana, and is a lucid account of the Hindu Kings and the establishment of rich cultural traditions in the valley. The ruins of the to be highlighted 'Martand' and other temples like Parihaspura at Pattan, Narannag at Kangan and the excavations at Burzhoma in the outskirts of the city of Srinagar speak of the architectural attainments as much as of the religious beliefs and practices of tbe ancient Kashmir. History, Art, Architechre, Mathematics, Astronomy, Theology Philosophy, Poetry and Aesthetics emanated from our ancestors. Kashmir during the days of yore was the centre of learning and the seat of a great University at Bijbehara near Anantnag to which scholars thronged from all parts of the world for knowledge and learning and for the study of Sanskrit, Literature, Philosophy etc. Lawrence in 1899 wrote, "the valley of Kashmir is the holy land of Hindus and I have hardly been in any village which does not show some relic of antiquity". 

Modern Kashmir owes a lot, for its rich cultural heritage, its language, literature and arts, its very 'Kashmiriat', to the Hindu who laid the foundation for the same and consolidated it as other cultures mingled with it down the centuries. He gave Shaivism to the world in its explicit and practical form. Now reduced to a minority, he is the inheritor of this distinct and glorious cultural, ethnic and religious background which though having so much in common with rest of the Hindu tradition of India is yet so distinct. It is his duty to preserve this distinct heritage, to secure his own roots, to assen his identity and to claim his rights and freedom- religious, political and social. He is peace loving and tolerant. He has not taken up arms to counter terrorist violence. He has suffered silently because he was a minority at the mercy of a brute majority. But Minority Rights are now acknowledged everywhere in the civilized world. The UN Secretary General in his June1992 blue-print about the role envisaged for UN makes a proposal for an International Convention defining inalienable minority rights and a declaration to this effect to be placed before the UN General Assembly. India, the motherland of Kashmiri Hindus, has to recognise this right of Kashmiri Pandits, First and foremost. It has to grant him his rightful claim and share in the Homeland. lt is a test case for India, for the very survival of its unity in diversity, to provide safeguards to each community and uphold the rights and the just aspirations of every ethnic and religious minority. And, India will have to prove to its own people and to the world community that it is determined to safeguard and preserve the aspirations and the rights and privileges of the Kashmiri Hindus. While, on the one hand, the Indian Govemment is ready to concede every demand of the terrorists and Islamic Zealots in Kashmir short of total secession, it will have to save its own face by granting a 'Homeland' to its secular, peace-loving citizens of the valley who sacrificed themselves at the altar of secularism and nationalism. 

The year 1993 all over the world is being celebrated as the year of 'indigenous people'. Kashmiri Pandits are the indigenous people of Kashmir with the continuity of a distinct ethno-religious tradition of more than five thousand years. Therefore, the world shall have to grant them their inalienable rights to exist in their Homeland with security of life, political liberty, freedom of thought and expression and in dignity and pride. 
 

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Panun Kashmir

   
 

Contents
Index
Introduction
Genesis (Why Homeland?)
The State of Jammu and Kashmir
The Hindus of the Valley
Advent of Islam and Persecution
Accession to India & Persecution
The real import of  'Naya Kashmir'
Administrative and State Conspiracy
Perseverance of Kashmiri Pandits
Indoctrination of the Masses
Disinformation
Writing on the wall
Rise of Armed terrorism
Sleeping conscience of the country
Adding salt to injury
Exile
Apartheid
Betrayal
Survival
Homeland
What is Homeland?
What area do we claim for the Homeland and why?
Why a separate portion as Homeland when whole of the valley belongs to us?
What claim does the exiled community have for a Homeland?
What are the overall implictions of granting the Homeland?
What will be the socio-political set up in the Homeland?
How does call for a Homeland serve the national interest and prevent the balkanisation of the country ?
Are we internationalizing the Kashmir issue by raising a call for a Homeland for the displaced Kashmiris and by appealing to the community of nations?
What about settlement outside the valley in the State or outside the State of Jammu & Kashmir?
Is Homeland slogan in any way against the interests of the community?
What if the terrorist outfits operating in the Valley give a call asking the exiles to return to the valley?
Is Homeland a viable proposition?
What about the displaced Kashmiris settled outside the valley?
What about Article 370 and the Homeland?
Why is Homeland so urgent?
Is it a Hindu Homeland that we are seeking?
What is Panun Kashmir and what does it stand for?

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