‘No jobs, no trust’, say former Kashmiri militants who returned in IHK

‘No jobs, no trust’, say former Kashmiri militants who returned in IHK

SRINAGAR (INP): The arrest of Sayed Liayqat Shah by the Delhi police for an alleged terror plot has outraged former Kashmiri militants, who say their homecoming from Pakistan under the Jammu and Kashmir government’s amnesty policy has been fraught with difficulties and a persisting trust deficit.

Many of them were on the streets of Srinagar on Tuesday, protesting that while the government had encouraged them to return, it did little to make them feel at home.

\”Our children do not get admission in schools. We have no jobs, no homes,\” says Zaibu Nisa, wife of a former militant, Abdul Rashid Khan.

Since 2010, when the amnesty policy was announced to rehabilitate former militants, some 1000 families have applied for return, of which 300 arrived in the hope of a fresh beginning.

After the controversy over Liyakat’s arrest, the amnesty policy is being reviewed by the government. Sources said corrective measures are being taken to ensure former militants returning from Pakistan through Nepal do not face hurdles.

Shabir Ahmad came back last year after spending almost two decades in Pakistan Kashmir. He brought his Pakistani wife and three children along. They were arrested and spent several months in jail.

\”My brothers say they spent Rs. 2 lakh on my court case to get me freed. I had to sell my share of land to repay them. I am repenting the decision to return,\” he says.

His wife Asma says she had hopes of a peaceful life since Shabir has a home and family in Kashmir.

Javid Ahmad, who is from Kupwara, says he’s struggling to get a state subject certificate, a requirement for people in Jammu and Kashmir. He says the amnesty policy has not helped him win back trust – schools turn away his children and he is denied jobs.

\”We are told we had crossed the Line of Control. We are suspected whether we committed any crime or not,\” he says.

Another young man says colleges deny him a place. \”I was a commerce student there (Pakistan). I am sitting at home for last one year,\” he says.

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