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Over 15,000 visit Kashmiri Pandits’ exhibit in Houston

Press Trust of India

Posted: Aug 29, 2005 at 0404 hrs IST

The heart-rending pictures depicting the tragic plight of the Kashmiri pandits, their selective killings, mass cremations, exodus and refugee life since 1990 due to terrorism in Kashmir drew thousands of people at an exhibition here.

The exhibition titled ‘‘A glimpse of a tragedy without anend’’ and designed by journalist and author Francois Gautier, covered the killings and hardships the community has undergone.

Hosted by the foundation against continuing terrorism (fact), a non-profit organisation, for raising awareness about terrorism and its affects on the people in India and South Asia, it was on display at the George R Brown Convention Center on August 20 and August 27 and drew over 15,000 people.

The exhibits, according to organisers, had been displayed in various other countries and was brought for the first time to the United States to commemorate the 15th anniversary of the exodus of 400,000 pandits from their roots in Kashmir.

The pictures, showcased the rich heritage of kashmiri Hindus, and the violence they have faced due to terrorism.

Many who saw the exhibition, were appalled at the sufferings of the community. ‘‘It is beyond my imagination, how a community can surviveand hold on to their culture, especially when barely 8,000 Kashmiri Hindus are left in Valley after exodus, said Ashwin Patel, a visitor. ‘‘The scale of the Kashmir exodus was larger than in Kosovo, yet the world remained silent,’’ fact director Rahul Pandit told PTI. ‘‘And, in this whole conflict there is not single mention of the sufferings that these Kashmiri pandits have faced after leaving their home and hearts back in Valley,’’ he added. Special guests to the exhibit included Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee (Democrat-Texas), Nick Lampson.

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