Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Pakistan: Sikhs complain Ahmadiyyas better recognized, move Peshawar high court on census


Advocate Raza Malik informed that the petition had been filed in the Peshawar high court under Article 199 of Islamic Republic of Pakistan, 1973.

Times of Ahmad | News Watch | UK Desk
Source/Credit: The Times of India
By Yudhvir Rana/TNN | March 22, 2017

AMRITSAR: Sikhs in Pakistan have moved court regarding the ongoing census 2017, in which the community was being counted as 'others' and not separately as 'Sikhs'. One of the petitioners, Radesh Singh, informed TOI that the petition had been filed in the Peshawar high court on Tuesday, demanding immediate stopping of the ongoing census, which was being conducted for the first time in 19 years.

"We find it strange that Ahmadiyya community, whose population is even lesser than Sikhs, is mentioned in the census forms, which is a clear indication of discrimination with us," he maintained.

Various religions, including Muslim, Hindu, Christian and Ahmadiyya, have been mentioned in the census forms while Sikhs and Parsis' would be counted under 'others' category, which has irked the community.

Advocate Raza Malik informed that the petition had been filed in the Peshawar high court under Article 199 of Islamic Republic of Pakistan, 1973.

Stating that it was the duty of the government to protect rights of every community, another petitioner Gurpal Singh said that Sikhs were fourth largest community in Pakistan, and if they were ignored, it could create differences between the present government and the Sikh community. "There is a sense of alienation in the community on not finding its presence in the census," he added.

Stating that the last census in the country was held in 1998, Radesh, who is also president of Sikh Committee of Pakistan, said Sikhs' separate counting was essential for community's overall growth. "The data obtained from the census will be used for distribution of national assembly seats, division of financial resources and for the distribution of civil services jobs," he maintained.


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