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Kashmiri youths petition Kalam

NEW DELHI, SEPT. 26. Kashmiri youths who reached here on a `Padyatra' from Jammu today submitted a memorandum to President APJ Abdul Kalam demanding immediate steps for their rehabilitation and protection of their lives.

``We were hounded out by anti-national elements from Kashmir valley when we were children in 1989 and today we are young. We have been languishing in camps for the past 15 years. Our future is in utter darkness if nobody comes to our rescue, the youths said.

Their plea and demands were also submitted to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi, former Deputy Prime Minister L K Advani, the Human Rights Commission and the United Nations.

They said they were being treated as worse than refugees though they had been declared as internally displaced people.

``Fifteen years of our exile is a shame on our democracy. The Indian leadership and the judiciary has failed to defend our fundamental rights and protect our rights and property,'' they said.

The youths raising slogans like ``We Want Survival,'' ``We Want to Live Honourably in Our Homes,'' ``Who Will Restore Our Rights?'' held a demonstration at the Jantar Mantar here before submitting the memorandum.

The `Padyatra' had been organised by the All India Kashmiri Samaj with participation of other bodies of migrant Kashmiris.

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