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India, a secular democracy, has provided unprecedented religious accommodations to its religious minorities and, in some instances, afforded more rights to minorities than to the majority Hindu community. The rights and religious freedom of Kashmiri Hindus, however, have been severely curtailed since 1989, when there was an organized and systematic campaign by Islamist militants to cleanse Hindus from Kashmir. Nearly 400,000 Pandits were forced to leave their ancestral homes, fleeing to other parts of India. Less than 4,000 Kashmiri Hindus remain in the Valley, living with daily threats of violence and terrorism. Moreover, several hundred Kashmiri Pandit cultural and religious sites have been destroyed, damaged, or illegally occupied. The displaced Pandits, many of whom continue to live in temporary refugee camps in Jammu and Delhi, are still unable to safely return to their homeland. Therefore, while India’s overall human rights record is not an issue, the condition and human rights of Kashmiri Hindus are of Serious Concern.

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