Kashmiri Pandits observe 20th yr of exodus from Valley
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Last Updated: Monday, September 14, 2009, 20:22
New Delhi: Twenty Kashmiri Pandits on Monday tonsured their heads here while several others offered prayers to mark the 20th anniversary of the first killing of a community member by militants in Kashmir, which triggered their exodus from the Valley.

On this day 20 years ago, a lawyer, Tika Lal Taploo, was killed by separatists outside his residence in Srinagar, four months before the community members were forced to leave the Valley in the height of militancy.

"As a symbolic protest to mark the anniversary, 20 Kashmiri Pandits tonsured their heads and offered prayers for thousands of unfortunate victims," a spokesperson of Kashmiri migrants' outfit, Panun Kashmir, said.

Twenty Kashmiri Pandits tonsured their heads at Yamuna Ghat in east Delhi while several others offered prayers, the spokesperson said, adding, "Each of the persons who underwent tonsuring symbolically represented each year of their life in exile.

"A special puja was performed as per Kashmiri Pandit rituals for the peace of all community members and the security forces who have lost their lives."

According to estimates, around 80,000 Kashmiri Pandits are currently living in the national capital after they had to leave Kashmir after the militancy erupted.

Bureau Report

First Published: Monday, September 14, 2009, 20:22

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