KOLKATA/ SRINAGAR : The families of the five labourers, who were gunned down by terrorists on Tuesday in Kashmir, said on Wednesday that their men were threatened regularly by the terror groups to leave the Valley as they were "non-Kashmiris". The families of Rafikul Sheikh (22), Kamaruddin Sheikh (34), Naimuddin Sheikh (32), Rafique Sheikh (52) and Mursalim Sheikh (36) broke down as all of them were the sole earning member of their families.
Rafikul’s mother Munzura Bibi said she was informed about the incident by the local police. "He used to work here as a daily labourer. But getting a job became a challenge. He has been going to Kashmir for past three years during this season to work as a labourer there," she said.
West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday announced Rs 5 lakh compensation each to the families of the five from Murshidabad district. She demanded a “strong investigation” into the incident to find out the “real truth”. Governor Jagdeep Dhankar also conveyed his condolence to the family members.
Congress MP Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, who visited the labourers, and BJP’s Mukul Roy, hit out at Trinamool-led government saying, ‘‘The state government has failed to secure jobs for poor people. Had there been jobs in Bengal, they would not have gone to Kashmir and these five men would have been alive.’’