Srinagar: There are over 32,000 widows and 97,000 orphaned children in violence-battered Jammu and Kashmir, a new study has found, suggesting that the unending conflict in the border state has only made things worse for the vulnerable sections of society.
"There were 32,400 widows and 97,200 orphans in 2008 in Kashmir and the number is growing. With the continuity and intensification of armed conflict, their life conditions have deteriorated to miserable sub-human levels," says the study conducted by valley-based known sociologist Bashir Ahmed Dabla.
The study says that widows and orphans in the state, which has been battling a separatist war since 1989, have not received adequate help from the government or NGOs.
"Neither the state nor NGOs have been able to help them in an organised and systematic manner. The tragic aspect of the situation is that the state has not adopted any specific social policy and programme in this regard. Their problems accumulate and intensify day by day," it says.
"Individuals, society, community and the state must share responsibilities in terms of coordination, organisation and effective implementation of relevant programmes," the study asserts.