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Posted at: Nov 24, 2015, 12:38 AM; last updated: Nov 23, 2015, 10:50 PM (IST)

Without jobs, no one ready to marry Valmiki boys in Jammu

Dinesh Manhotra

Tribune News Service

Jammu, November 23

Valmikis living in Jammu have not only been deprived of the citizenship rights, but they are also confronted with a social problem. They are finding it difficult to get suitable matches for their children.

In Jammu and kashmir, Permanent Resident Certificate (PRC) is required to pursue professional courses or apply for government job. The PRC is also required to get category certificates.

Valmikis, who originally hail from Punjab and have been living in J&K since 1957, are deprived of the PRC due to the special status of the state.

Valmikis in Jammu are outcast by their own community. The future of most of the Valmiki boys looks uncertain as they cannot either go for professional courses or get government jobs. Ironically, educated girls belonging to the Valmiki community in Jammu get a match outside the state, but nobody prefers to give their daughters to Valmiki boys who have no jobs.

“Most of our educated girls are married outside the state as we do not get suitable match for them locally,” said Garu Bhatti, president of Valmiki Colony.

Bhatti further said: “Unemployment rate is high among boys of the Valmiki community.” “The future of our boys is bleak till they get citizenship rights,” he said. The special status granted to the state is the only obstacle in granting citizenship rights to them, he added.

Rashpal, a Valmiki, who is a postgraduate, said the special status of J&K was the main reason for their bleak future. “Both the state and Central governments have started many programmes for the socio-economic growth of our community, but we are not entitled to take the benefits of such programmes due to denial of the Scheduled Caste certificates to us,” Rashpal said.

A scheme in collaboration with the National Safai Karamcharis Finance and Development Corporation and the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment was launched in J&K for the socio-economic growth of safai karamcharis, but Valmikis cannot take its benefit because they are not the permanent residents of J&K.

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