PESHAWAR, 21 March: The Sikh community residing in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa on Tuesday challenged the ongoing population census-2017 in Peshawar High Court (PHC) over the emission of separate column for Sikhism in census forms 2017.
The Sikh community filed a petition in PHC seeking inclusion of separate column for Sikhism in census form. The petition was filed by Chandar Singh, Chiran Jeeth Singh Gorpal Singh, Radish and other representatives of Sikh community.
The community representatives showed disappointment over the emission of separate column for Sikhism in census forms 2017. In their petition, they sought inclusion of separate column for Sikhs like other religions including Muslims, Christians, Hindu, Qadiani and Ahmadis in the census form. They said that over 100,000 Sikhs are present in Pakistan, however, they were not being given separate representation as Hindus, Christians and Ahmadis had. They said that the emission of Sikhism from census form is violation of the constitution of Pakistan.
Sikh community said, the step created sense of depravity among community members who are living in Pakistan.
They sought the court to issue orders to the government asking them to include “Sikhism” in census forms.
Federal Interior Ministry and the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics federal and provincial departments were made parties in the petition.
The Sikh community representatives expressed their disappointment at being ‘left out’ of the national census, saying they feared their community would not be adequately represented in Pakistan’s first national headcount in 19 years.