Srinagar: According to the information, there are allegations of two Sikh girls from Kashmir have been allegedly abducted and converted to Islam. One of these girls was married to a Muslim boy who is still missing. On June 26, the case of forced conversion from Jammu and Kashmir came to light. According to reports, an 18-year-old Sikh girl from Budgam district was forcibly converted to Islam after being seduced. At the same time, another case is of a girl from Mahjoor Nagar, Srinagar, who had attended the program of her Muslim friend. According to sources, she was married to a boy who attended the ceremony. While the girl was not a minor, she is still missing.
The Sikh community held a protest in the city yesterday, demanding that an anti-conversion law be imposed in Jammu and Kashmir like Uttar Pradesh. Expressing their anger, the community staged a protest on Sunday in Baghat Barzulla area. Chanting slogans against the administration, they alleged that the Sikh community has been always ignored in Kashmir. It was told that when they were seeking justice in this matter, the police ignored them.
Shiromani Akali Dal leader Manjinder Singh Sirsa and Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee have also raised the issue on social media. A delegation of Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee who have gone to Srinagar for this matter along with the local Sikh deligations called on Lieutenant Governor, Manoj Sinha at Raj Bhavan and apprised him of their concerning issues. The delegation led by its President S. Manjinder Singh Sirsa and members of several Sikh Gurdwara Management Committees of Kashmir region, projected various issues of the Sikh Community pertaining to the protection of the rights of Women of the community. Minority Commission in the UT, implementation of Inter-religious Marriage Act, land issue of Gurdwara at Bharthana, Srinagar, and other religious issues. They also demanded reservation of Sikh community in delimitation process.
The Lt Governor gave a patient hearing to the delegation and assured them that all their projected issues would be taken into consideration by the Government. They were assured that Administration will take appropriate action on the issues faced by the Sikh community living in Jammu & Kashmir. Pandurang K Pole Divisional Commissioner Kashmir, Vijay Kumar IGP Kashmir; and Sandeep Choudhary SSP Srinagar were also present during the interaction.
Shiromani Akali Dal leader Manjinder Singh Sirsa released a statement saying that “Hon’ble LG, Jammu & Kashmir Manoj Sinha Ji for immediately issuing directions w.r.t the issue of forced Nikah of Sikh daughters in Srinagar. He has assured us that the Sikh girl who was forcibly converted would be returned back to her family. He addressed our concerns related to the safety of Sikh girls in the valley and this harmful trend of religious conversion. We also expressed the demand of having an inter-religion law which would mandate parents’ permission. We also handed him the letter of Giani Harpreet Singh Ji, Jathedar, Sri Akal Takht Sahib. We also discussed the issue of Local Gurdwara Land in the meeting to which he readily agreed upon. He also agreed on setting up a Minority Commission in the state to address the issues of minority Sikhs. Thanking him once again for assuring that stern actions will be taken against those forcing Nikah or conversions on minority Sikh girl.”
According to Sardar Santpal Singh, President Gurudwara Parbandhak Committee-Budgam, who narrated the whole incident saying that the girl was mentally unstable. A Muslim man lured her on the pretext of love and marriage to convert her. He said, “A girl from Sikh community has been forcefully converted to Islam. She is not mentally stable. The man lured her on the pretext of love. It is not a love affair but a clear case of Love Jihad. The government is acting negatively against us.”
He further added that despite written assurance by the SP who was handling the case that she would be handed over back to the Sikh family, the court orders came against them. He said, “The police inspector had assured in writing that the girl would be handed over to them after presenting her in the Court. However, the judge gave the judgement in favour of the Muslim man and handed over the girl to him.”
Santpal Singh further added that the parents and relatives of the girl were sitting outside the Court as they were not allowed inside due to Covid regulations. Santpal Singh said that, “the Police asked the family members of the girl to sit outside to avoid the crowd in the Court. However, all the relatives of the Muslim man were allowed in the Court. The judge recorded the statement of the girl in the absence of her family members and took note of the statements of the relatives of the Muslim man. No one from the family of the girl was called in the Court during the proceedings.”
He said that the judge should have handed over the girl to the Sikh family at least for a week. He said “If the girl still wanted to go to the Muslim man, no one would have stopped her, but at least for a week, the girl should have been given to the Sikh family. Santpal urged the majority community to come in support of them. He reminded them how the Sikh community helped them in bringing girls back from cities like Pune and Mumbai and supported them in their time of need. Can’t you help us now, Come forward and support us. The brotherhood should remain intact in the Kashmir valley.”