Rajouri, July 26: The introduction of a bill regarding granting of scheduled tribe (ST) status to Paharis and others in Parliament today , has led to jubilations among the the Pahari community . They are seeing it as a result of their decades long struggle.
"We will get our right after four decades long struggle, which we carried with peace. We always put forth our demand within the constitution ,”said Subash Chander Sharma of Rajouri.
A retired employee from Jammu and Kashmir Government, Sharma said that Paharis are now about to get their right and it is a time of festival for entire tribe.
DDC member Surankote, Sohail Malik said that decades long battle fought by Paharis has finally been won." We thank every member of Pahari community who irrespective of caste, colour, creed and religion supported this struggle ," he said.
Sohail Malik also thanked Government of India for ensuring that ST quota of already ST enlisted communities will remain intact with no change of any nature. Malik appealed every citizen of society to remain under the ambit of law and to ensure that no such act of celebration is made which goes unlawful.
Manzoor Naik, a BJP leader from Rajouris' Budhal said that BJP has always turned it's slogans into reality. " BJP made a promise with Paharis that they will get their genuine right and it was announced by Union Home Minister multiple times and now this dream of Paharis has come true," he said adding that BJP is always committed for inclusive development of all the sections of society.
BJP's J&K General Secretary Vibodh Gupta, a former legislator, gave the credit to BJP Government and especially to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah.
Meanwhile, Gujjar and Bakerwal youth of Rajouri held a protest demonstration against the bill. They took out a protest rally, which started from Dak Bungalow Rajouri and culminated at DC office Gate after passing through Gujjar Mandi chowk.
The protesters stated that Scheduled Tribe status meant for downtrodden and weaker sections of society will get eroded if people from upper castes are added in it.
They said that inclusion of upper castes in ST is not acceptable to Gujjar and Bakerwal community and they will resist it with tooth and nail as per law of land and in a peaceful manner.
" Every single member from Gujjar and Bakerwal community is nationalist from heart and always stood for national values and we will keep doing so." said protesting youth leader Guftar Ahmed who added that they are deeply hurt by proposed bill of inclusion of upper castes in STs.