Kashmiri Pandits amid Conflict-induced Displacement: Facts, Issues, and the Future Ahead

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Bilal Ahmad Mir

Abstract

The article reviews the discourse surrounding the displacement of Kashmiri Pandits (KPs) in 1990 and the challenges they face in returning to the Kashmir Valley. The displacement KPs of has been a longstanding issue, and the community has faced several challenges. Many of them have not been able to return to their homes in the Kashmir valley, and their displacement has become protracted. As a result, they are neither treated as refugees nor provided with any international assistance, leaving them to fend for themselves in their country of origin. This article sheds light on the displacement of KPs by reviewing the various determinants of their choice to flee violence in the backdrop of armed insurgency. It shows explicitly how the displacement was not a sudden event but a process that took place over a period of time. Various socio-political and economic factors contributed to their displacement, including the rise of militancy in the 1990s, discriminatory policies towards the minority community, and the lack of effective protection and support from the state authorities. These factors led to a growing sense of fear and insecurity among the KPs, culminating in their mass migration in 1990. The author emphasises the need for a balanced approach toward KPs’ return migration. The article suggests that the solution to the issue of KPs’ return migration requires a multifaceted approach that takes into account the concerns and aspirations of all parties involved, including the KPs, the Muslim community, and the government.

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