Staff Reporter

Jammu: The Jammu and Kashmir Government on Thursday said 1,137 Kashmiri Pandit families had conveyed their willingness to return to the valley if they were provided security and employment.

This is one of rare occasions that a section has expressed a desire to return to the valley since the large scale migration to other States after the outbreak of militancy in 1989.

Steps for peace

Making an intervention during the question hour in the Legislative Council, Chief Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad said: "The Central Government as well as the State Government are committed to the safe and dignified return of Kashmiri migrants to the valley.''

`` And for this to take place, the Governments are taking steps aimed at creating a peaceful atmosphere in the valley."

Interestingly the maximum number of migrants who have expressed their desire to return to the valley are from pockets which are still infested with militancy.

Replying to a question, Mr. Azad said the State was also creating infrastructure for those migrants who did not want to return to their native land.