Tortured in Pakistan, Hindu migrants want to stay in India  

 'We Hindus in Pakistan are being discriminated against, tortured and harassed,' complains Ram Lal, a 45-year-old migrant from Pakistan, one of the estimated 10,000 migrants from that country settled in and around here in the desert state of Rajasthan.
He came to Jodhpur with his family of five over six months ago when, he says, things started to worsen.
'I do not want to go back....being a Hindu, there are so many problems for you in Pakistan,' Ram Lala told IANS, adding that only one member of his family, his brother, now lives in Pakistan.
'In Pakistan we, being Hindus, are not allowed to eat in a restaurant or a dhaba and if allowed by chance, we are served food in different utensils which we have to clean ourselves after eating,' said Ram Lal, whose name was changed on request, as he feared for the safety of his brother.
Ram Lal, who used to work in a farm in Dilshakh near Hyderabad in Sindh province, said: 'Hindus were given a paltry remuneration in comparison to Muslims and we had no one to complain to'.
Imran Kumar, another Hindu refugee, adopted a Muslim name saying this was the best way to live peacefully in Pakistan. His father's name is Nemi Kumar.
'I come from a Hindu family. I did not change my religion, I only changed my name and it helped me to get admission in school easily,' said Imran, a man in his early 30s, adding that if you are a Hindu in Pakistan it is most likely that you will not get admission in educational institutions.
Lal and Kumar are not the only Pakistani refugees in Jodhpur. According to rough estimates by Seemant Lok Sangathan (SLS), a group working for refugees in Rajasthan, over 10,000 Hindu migrants from Pakistan are living in this city.
Over 5,300 of them were granted citizenship till 2005 and SLS says more than 5,000 others have now already applied for long term visa (LTV).
SLS president Hindu Singh Sodha said: 'The LTV number keeps on changing because whoever stays here for six months can apply for it to the union home ministry and according to our information, the displaced who have applied for LTV till date are around 5,000.'
'Religious persecution, discrimination and harassment of the Hindu minority are the main reasons behind people wanting to come to India. While the Pakistani government has discriminatory policies for the minority community members, they are also victims of rising fundamentalism in Pakistan,' Ranaram told IANS.

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