JAIPUR: Octogenarian Kube Singh of Pakistan regrets his decision to stay back in Pakistan newly formed in 1947 after his Muslim neighbours’ assured him of a prosperous and hassle-free life in the new Islamic state. Singh, who is a father of seven sons, had never thought even in his wildest dreams of leaving his ancestors’ land at the age of 86 to spend his last days in India.
Singh along with 40 other Pakistani Hindus, including 17 members of his family, landed in India on a religious visa to tour Delhi and Haridwar two months ago. They family came to Gangangar which has a sizeable number of families belonging to their clan ‘Auth’. Now, they are unwilling to return even though his visa expires on July 12.
Police and intelligence officials have asked the ‘Pakistani guests’ in Ganganagar to leave before their visa expires, but the ‘guests’ responded by shooting off a letter to the state government expressing their unwillingness to return.
“Shoot me or kill me. I will not leave from here. Nobody is safe in Pakistan, not even the Muslims. The day begins with a suicide blast and ends with a massacre of innocents,” Singh told TOI over the phone from Ganganagar.
Singh speaking fluent Sindhi said in the letter to the government they have sought citizenship saying, “India is our grandmother and we are natural citizens of this country”.
The string of violence against the minorities especially Hindus and Christians in Pakistan has forced the Singh and many others to flee from the land which his ancestors owned since the last 8 centuries. Some of these Pak nationals are now landless labourers. Most of them hailed from Umerkot in the Tharparkar region which has 60% of the Pakistani Hindu population and were frequently persecuted by the landlords and subjected to forced conversions.
Living in a Dharam Shala in Ganganagar, these Pakistanis claimed that they have been subjected to ruthless behavior by the police and intelligence of Pakistan and checked their credentials several times over during a given period. Notably, they population of Hindus in Pakistan at the time of Partition was 15% which has now been reduced to 1% in 2011, according to a report.