Kashmir Indepth

Kashmiris always stood by us but recent killings terrorised us, say non local labourers

Arjumand Shah

Srinagar Oct 19 (KINS): The recent killings of labourers from Bihar and Uttar Pradesh have created a fear among non-locals labourers in Kashmir.

There is a fear in Kashmir following the recent civilian killings.

At least 11 civilians have been killed in Kashmir in this month so far. Among them five were non-local labourers. The other six were locals of Jammu and Kashmir from Muslim, Hindu and Sikh community.

Gautum Kumar, a carpenter from Bihar said he was working in Kashmir for the last 15 years.

“We never feel insecure in Kashmir. Kashmiris always stood by us. But the situation is worrisome after recent killings of non-local labourers. My family is worried so I decided to go home. I will come if there is improvement in the situation,” Kumar told news agency Kashmir Indepth News Service (KINS), while boarding a bus at Tourist Reception Bus in Srinagar for Jammu.

Pankaj Paswan, a migrant labourer from Bihar too left Kashmir. “I was supposed to go home on October 25, but left as migrant labourers are being killed,” he added

Over five lakh labourers from Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Jharkhand, West Bengal and Madhya Pradesh come to Kashmir every year to earn their livelihood.

However, a large number of workers were seen heading to Jammu on Monday and Tuesday.

Suresh Dhar of Westbengal who has been selling panipuri in Kashmir for the last two years said, “Situation is getting bad here. We are scared; we have children with us and hence going back to our hometown. I have my ailing parents in Westbengal who will take care of them if anything happens to me.” (KINS)


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