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Samiti disappointed by exclusion from PM's roundtable

Written by: Staff
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New Delhi, Feb 24 (UNI) The Delhi Kashmiri Samiti today said the Centre has ''excluded a large number'' of Kashmiri Pandits from tomorrow's roundtable conference by not inviting the organisation for the meet.

''A large number of Kashmiri Pandits, who are represented by the Samiti, have been excluded from the conclave by the Centre,'' Samiti President L N Dhar said here.

Mr Dhar said the move reflected the ''casual way'' the Prime Minister's Office was dealing with the pandits.

''This action reflects...the casual way the Prime Minister's Office is dealing with the problems of Kashmiri Pandits most of whom are living as refugees in their own country. The Pandits protest this...,'' he added.

He said the conference, convened by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, will lose its significance if opinion was not sought from all sections.

''The Samiti has always been at the fore front of the struggle of Kashmiri Pandits.... We believe that our absence will rob the meet of its significance,'' he added.

As a mark of protest, former Samiti President Sunil Shakdher, who had accepted the invited for the conference, has now decided not to attend the meet.

Mr Shakdher said he had written to Dr Singh, UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi and Home Minister Shivraj Patil in this regard.

Dr Singh will tomorrow chair the first ever all party roundtable conference on Kashmir tomorrow which almost all top separatist leaders are not attending.

UNI NR RR RK1558

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