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APSCC asks Sikhs to remain vigilant in view of Trump’s India visit

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Srinagar, Feb 22: A Sikh organisation on Saturday asked the community members in Kashmir to remain vigilant ahead of US President Donald Trump’s visit to India, saying such high-profile visits bring back memories of the 2002 Chattisinghpora massacre when unidentified gunmen killed 36 Sikhs.

“The visit of a high-profile foreign personality especially that from the US leads to fear psychosis and panic among the Sikhs living in the valley. The whole India seems to be busy in making preparations for Trump’s visit, but for Sikhs of Kashmir, the visit has brought with it the fears that the members of the community are yet again on the radar,” All Parties Sikh Coordination Committee (APSCC) chairman Jagmohan Singh Raina said in a statement here.

“The Sikhs are feeling insecure and they fear that something untoward might happen on the eve of the US President’s visit,” Raina added.

He said the scars inflicted on Sikhs of Kashmir during the visit of former US President Bill Clinton were afresh even after 20 years.

“Although 36 Sikhs of Chattisinghpora, Anantnag, were killed in March 2000 during Clinton’s visit, till date the people who carried out the crime are yet to be identified.

“It is highly unfortunate that neither the government of India nor the successive state governments have reached to any conclusion with respect to identifying the killers of the Sikhs. The people at helm have just been making claims and truth of the matter is killers continue to roam free,” Raina said.

The APSCC chairman said the episode of Chattisinghpora was followed by a “fake encounter at Brakpora in Anantnag district and thereafter 10 persons were killed after security forces opened fire on the people protesting against the fake encounter”.

“There was fear among the Sikhs living in north and south villages of Kashmir on the eve of Barack Obama’s visit as well,” he said.

Raina demanded a fair, thorough and impartial probe into the Chattisinghpora incident so that the killers are brought to book.

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