By: Zubair Qureshi/IANS
Jammu: The Pahari tribe in Jammu and Kashmir is jubilant after the Registrar General of India (RGI) and the National Commission for Scheduled Tribes (NCST) sealed the recommendations of the three-member Backward Class Commission to include the tribe in the Scheduled Tribes (ST) category.
According to the Pahari leadership, they are fully convinced that the current government is for the poor and the middle class people.
Till date, the file for inclusion of Paharis in the ST category could not go beyond the institutions of Registrar General of India and the National Commission for Scheduled Tribes, but now with the stamp of these institutions on the file, the pending demand is seen to be fulfilled.
Union Home Minister Amit Shah had also made it clear during his recent visit to Kashmir that justice will be done to the Pahari tribe very soon.
The efforts of the All Jammu and Kashmir Pahari Cultural and Welfare Forum to bring justice to the Pahari tribe, who were victims of Partition, are bearing fruit now.
A movement was started under this banner in the seventies which led to Pahari programme being broadcast from the All India Radio station in Srinagar, while Pahari programme ‘Lashkara’ was telecast fro the Doordarshan Kendra in Srinagar.
Separately, the establishment of a department for the promotion and development of language and literature, the formation of the Jammu and Kashmir Hill Advisory Board for the development of the tribe, the establishment of more than nine hill hostels, scholarships for hill tribe students, 4 per cent reservation in Jammu and Kashmir until ST status is granted etc. also helped the community.
According to the Pahari leadership, ST status for the tribe is a great success, the credit for which goes to Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Thanking the Central government, Abdul Majeed Zindadil, a prominent leader of the tribe, said that with this historic move, he is convinced that Prime Minister Modi is keeping his promise of welfare of the lower and middle class people in the society.
“Justice has been done to the Pahari tribe, who were suffering for a long time. And this has been possible because of Prime Minister Modi,” he said.