Kashmir Indepth

‘Have mercy on us’, Say 22 Kashmiri pilgrims stranded in Iran

‘Our repeated pleas falling on deaf ears, don’t know if all have been evacuated, why not we’  

Ishtiyaq Ahmad

Srinagar, May 17 (KINS): An infant among 22 Kashmiri pilgrims stuck in Iran since past two months, Sunday urged the Central government and the Jammu and Kashmir administration to evacuate them like others were.

The 22 residents are mostly from Srinagar and Budgam districts of J&K and according to them all have been repeatedly tested Covid negative and yet they aren’t being evacuated from Iran.

Speaking to news agency KINS over phone from Iran, one of the stranded Kashmiri said that they are cursing their luck as to why they visited Iran. “Over 313 pilgrims and students from J&K were evacuated and all of them are back to their homes. We are here and among us is an infant a few children and some elderly people too. But all of us have tested negative for Covid,” he said.

He said that despite making repeated pleas to the, Indian embassy in Iran and also the J&K government about evacuation, all the requests are falling on deaf ears.

Another pilgrim stranded in Iran said that they are not getting the medicines prescribed to them by the doctors in Kashmir. “Drugs in Iran are totally different from those we get in Kashmir. So we are facing health risks here as we aren’t able to get proper medicines too,” he said.

The group made a fresh appeal to, Indian embassy in Iran, Foreign Secretary of India, J&K government, J&K government spokesman Rohit Kansal and to all those involved in evacuation of Kashmiris stuck out of J&K, to “please listen to the 22 people stranded in Iran and facilitate their return.”

“We have been moving from pillar to post, but nobody is listening to us. We don’t know the reason. Despite the fact, all of us have tested negative for the Covid, we continue to remain stuck and stranded here,” the group members said, and also requested Lieutenant Governor Girish Chander Murmu to take steps for their smooth evacuation for the sake of humanity.

“If authorities  continue to give deaf ears to our evacuation demand, we are sure that we will die of starvation in our rooms here and blame will lie on the government,” another group member, who seemed frustrated of lack of response from the representatives of governments, said.(KINS)

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