UNITED SIKHS
May 24 2010
10th Jeth (Samvat 542 Nanakshahi)
Press Release

UNITED SIKHS Rehabilitates Thirteen More Families and Need to help 40 More who are Threatened by the Taliban in Pakistan

“We the Sangat in Bangkok were deeply distressed when we were shown the plight of minorities in Pakistan. If we do not reach out to them in such dire conditions, who do we expect to do so. We sincerely hope that our brothers from all corners support and inspire each other to support each other, whenever the need arises." said Pinderpal Singh, a Bangkok Sikh community representative.

Peshawar, Pakistan: UNITED SIKHS, since February has provided financial assistance to rehabilitate 13 families who had to flee from their homes in the North West Frontier Province of Pakistan due to threats from the Taliban and communal conflict.

The rehabilitation programme for Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) was funded mainly by donors from Bangkok, UK, Canada and USA, who responded to an appeal for help from UNITED SIKHS. Last year we rehabilitated 11 families from the North West Frontier Province, bringing the total to 24.

 

Sant singh and his son from sada, kurram agency received cosmetic items for his shop

 

Mahan singh orakzai agency received cash assistance for his shop

Under the programme, we helped the families to set up small shops in Peshawar, Hassan Abdal, Rawalpindi and Nankana Sahib as a source of income which they badly needed after they fled from the Taliban in the (Feroz khel tribe) Orakzai Agency and and communal conflict in the (Sada) Khurram Agency. Click here for details of families rehabilitated.

Click Here for Photos of all heads of families who received help.

“We the Sangat in Bangkok were deeply distressed when we were shown the plight of minorities in Pakistan. If we do not reach out to them in such dire conditions, who do we expect will do so. We sincerely hope that our brothers and sisters from all corners support and inspire each other to support each other, whenever the need arises." said Pinderpal Singh, a Bangkok Sikh community representative.

“More families are in need of relocation and rehabilitation. After the Taliban beheaded Jaspal Singh on abducting him in the Khyber Agency with Surjeet Singh and Gurvinder Singh in February, Sikh families of the Khyber agency live in severe tension and fear for their safety,” said Mejindarpal Kaur, UNITED SIKHS Director who highlighted the needs of the Pakistan IDPs  to the Bangkok Sikh community in February.

“There are about 40 Sikh families in the Khyber Agency who need to be relocated to safer areas of Peshawar or Nankana Sahib as their lives are in danger," she added.

Each family needs $1000 USD to relocate and start a new life in a safer area.

UNITED SIKHS also donated some books and Kakaars (Sikh articles of faith) to Guru Angad Div Ji Khalsa Dharmic School and to Bhai Joga Singh Khalsa Dharmic School, both in Peshawar. Master Ravinder Singh Ji and Master Charanjit Singh thanked UNITED SIKHS for the donation.

The displacement crisis in north-west Pakistan is not over. In addition to those who fled last May some 1.3 million people from the Federally Administered Tribal Areas remain displaced in various parts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa , the new name of North West Frontier Province(NWFP). They fled homes in Bajaur, Mohmand, South Waziristan, Khyber, Kurram and Orakzai in various waves as security forces launched operations against militants in the tribal belt. Many of those from Bajaur have lived in camps for more than 18 months, while those from Orakzai and Khurram have fled more recently. People are still fleeing the conflict areas. In April end, some 85,000 displaced people from Kurram and Orakzai have taken shelter in Hangu, Kohat, and in Peshawar.

You may read a previous press release on our Sikh Aid relief efforts for Pakistan IDPs at http://www.unitedsikhs.org/PressReleases/PRSRLS-29-12-2009-00.html

Issued by:
Ravjeet Singh
Community Advocacy Director
UNITED SIKHS-UK
Email: contact@unitedsikhs.org

40 Sikh families in the Khyber Agency await help to be relocated to safety after a Sikh was beheaded by the Taliban in February in the Khyber Agency. UNITED SIKHS needs your help to support and rehabilitate these families in need. Each family needs $1,000 USD to be set up with a means of livelihood.

Donate at www.unitedsikhs.org/donate or mail a check to a UNITED SIKHS office nearest to you
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