Kashmiri Pandits Share Memories, Pictures of 1990 Exodus Pledging to Return Home With Hashtag #HumWapasAayenge
File image of a protest by Kashmiri Pandits (Photo Credits: IANS)

New Delhi, January 19: Exactly 30 years ago on January 19, 1990, the Kashmiri Pandits, a minority community in Kashmir, were forced to leave their homeland as they were being targetted by Muslim extremists. For the Kashmiri Pandits, every year, January 19 brings back horrific memories of their forced exodus. To mark 30 years of the exodus of Kashmiri Pandits from the Valley, Kashmiri Pandits shared their experiences and pictures from the past with the hashtag #HumWapasAayenge (we pledge to return) on Twitter. Thirty Years of Kashmiri Pandits Exodus; Community Awaits Return to Homeland.

Author Rahul Pandita tweeted a picture of his family which survived. He wrote: "A rare family photograph that survived exodus. Taken at my Kashmir home in 1982. Mother in blue (left), me in red on the floor with a toy pistol. 8 years later, on 19 January 1990, Ma would hold a knife in her hand all night as mobs outside bayed for blood #HumWapasAayenge." The hashtag #HumWapasAayenge is inspired by the dialogue "Hum Aayenge Apne Watan" from the yet-to-be-released film "Shikara". Kashmiri Pandits Discuss Rehabilitation Issue With Foreign Envoys Delegation.

Rahul Pandita's Tweet on Kashmiri Pandits' Exodus:

Taking to his Twitter handle, veteran journalist Aditya Raj Kaul shared his first picture in Jammu after his family fled the Kashmir valley. He captioned: "My first photograph in exile from home on 19th/20th January, 1990 at Jammu. Today we complete three decades in exile. Thirty years of longing to return to Kashmir. Ancestral house turned into ashes by Islamist Azadi wallahs. Years now fade into decades. #HumWapasAayenge."

Aditya Raj Kaul's Tweets on His Family's Forced Exodus From Kashmir:

Actor Chandan Sadhu described the horrific night of January 19. "30 years back, today we were forced to leave our homes in the middle of the night, in bitter cold, we were made to flee Kashmir, we faced bullets, our houses were set on fire & our women raped. Today completes our 30 years in exile. #Justice4kashmirihindus #KashmiriHinduExodus," he wrote.

Chandan Sadhu's Tweet:

Journalist Shivani Bazaz shared a picture of her family from a migrants' camp in Jammu. She wrote: This is one of the very few photos of my childhood. My mother's family lived in this one room with a tin roof for years after my grandfather was killed in 1990. #HumWapasAayenge."

In a tweet, Kashmiri columnist Junaid Qureshi apologised to the Kashmiri Pandits for what the community was subjected to. "I, Junaid Qureshi - A Kashmiri Muslim for the Kashmiri Pandits - apologize on behalf of some of my Kashmiri brethren for the sin of murdering Kashmiriyat. I know it is not enough, but acceptance and introspection are the first steps towards reconciliation. May God forgive us," he tweeted.