Pak Hindus eager to exercise their franchise in Raj polls

With issues of their rehabilitation and citizenship figuring in poll manifestos of various political parties, over one lakh Pakistani Hindu migrants in Rajasthan are eager to participate in the upcoming Assembly elections and vote for the candidate of their choice.

Hindu Singh Sodha, President of Seemant Lok Sangthan, an organisation for welfare of Pakistani Hindu migrants, said the community was elated that their concerns and problems had been taken into consideration by the political parties.

Sodha said that earlier, they had unanimously decided to hit the ‘NOTA’ button in the state elections but after both, Congress andBJP, decided to count their issues in their respective manifestos, they changed their stand and have decided now to cast their votes for their favoured candidates.

“These migrants have been struggling hard to get their issues of rehabilitation and citizenship resolved since long but they had been faced with consistent negligence.

“But this is for the first time when political parties have incorporated our issues in their poll manifestos and have expressed seriousness to our problems and issues,” he said.

Sodha added that there was no referendum from the organisation to the community in favour of any party or candidate.

There are about 1.25 lakh Pakistani Hindus, with Indian citizenship, in Rajasthan, who are in decisive position to influence the results on seven seats across the state, which include Barmer, Chohtan and Shive in Barmer district; Jaisalmer district; Kolayat and Khajuwala in Bikaner district and Soorsagar in Jodhpur district, Sodha said.

At these seats, they have the concentration from 8,000 to 25,000. Of these Chohtan has the largest concentration of Pak Hindus with 25000 votes, he added.

Source: Business Standard