Migration of Sikh communities from Khyber, recession in the markets of Bara and Tirah

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa: from Khyber district Sikh communities Migration has started. They are now leaving this area and going elsewhere. With his departure, business activities have started slowing down in the markets of Bara and Tirah. The Sikh community had been living in Khyber for almost a century. Papinder Singh, who is engaged in property business in Bara Bazar for the last three decades, said that earlier there were more than 400 Sikh shops in Bara Bazar.

He said that after 2005, when the situation started deteriorating for them, many Sikhs migrated to other areas of the country. Papinder is a resident of Kamarkhel. He said that those who were left also went to Peshawar and Punjab. Papinder said that the killing of two Sikh businessmen in Batatal area last year has also accelerated the exodus of Sikhs. He said that the business of Sikhs in this area is on the verge of closure.

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Exodus of Sikh traders from Bara

He said that the Ranjit Singh family, one of the slain traders, had 10 shops in Bara Bazar. However, now one remains. The rest went to Nankana and Punjab. He said that at present there are 18 Sikh shops in Bara Bazar. However, some of them were about to leave. Apart from this, he said that the rising rents are also giving death blow to their businesses. Papinder Singh further said that after the murder last year, FC started protecting Sikh traders during the day. However, now the protection has been abolished. Apart from this, he said that many families of the area including the famous Hakim Man Singh of Bara have shifted to India. Man Singh is currently living in New Delhi.

Threat of extortion to Sikh traders in Tirah

At the same time, he told the same condition of Tirah. Papinder said that there were 12 shops of Sikh traders in Tirah Maidan. However, he said that at present the situation is not good for them and they are also trying to shift from there. He said that under Lashkar-e-Islam, Sikh traders were forced to pay Jizya tax in return for protection. Was. However, he said that now Sikh traders are being threatened with extortion. Apart from this, Papinder said that many Sikhs have land and property in Tirah and Khyber. However, he said that many of them have left after selling their properties. Presently only two Sikh families are living in Tirah area of ​​Khyber.

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Most of the Sikhs migrated to India after partition.

The Sikh community in Khyber district has been living in the district since the time of Ranjit Singh. Traditionally they have had good relations with Afridis and other tribals. After partition, most of the Sikhs migrated to India. However, the local tribals gave shelter to the Sikhs at Orakzai and Khyber. Later the Sikh community got immersed in trade and some of them migrated to other areas of the country as well. One of the bazaars of Bara was also known as Sikh Ghari.

At the same time, Amir Singh, a resident of Malkadeen sports area, told that he has been doing business in Bara for three decades. He said that after the market reopened in 2017, he along with 15 other Sikh traders shifted their business back to Bara. However, anarchy and inflation forced some of them to shift again. He said that earlier Bara Bazar was a safe haven for Sikh traders. But now it is not so.

what the local merchant has to say

Local trader Anjuman Tajiran Bara, President Ali Muhammad Afridi told that due to the current inflation there has been a decline in business activities in the market. The market was badly affected due to over a decade-long insurgency and military operations, he said. After the market was reopened in 2016, we made intensive efforts to rehabilitate it. Apart from this, he said that he also made his severed relations with the traders from the rest of the country and asked them to return and start their business, so that the business activities could get a boost.

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