GO TO SOURCE
NEW DELHI, INDIA, June 13, 2001: "We will never go back to Pakistan," asserts Chander Pal, one of several Pakistani Hindus living here quietly since fleeing their country to escape persecution by Islamic zealots. "Here we feel at home. In Pakistan each day was like hell, but we suffered indignities silently as we had no choice," he said. Pal, 32, is one of some 150 Pakistanis who live in Sanjay Colony near the Bhatti mines in the Indian capital's southern fringes. Like the others he is determined to stay on in India. The Pakistanis follow their own customs and practices. They don't mingle with the Indians. Sanjay Colony has no regular supply of water and electricity, but there is a school, a small hospital and a police post. But despite the pathetic conditions, the Pakistanis say they feel safe and secure. These Pakistanis began trickling into India about 12 years ago. The men and women spoke up about their past in Pakistan. "Dogs and Hindus are treated alike there," said Dilip, who also came here in 1998. Pal said he envied Indian Muslims. "They enjoy so much respect in this country. Even if something happens to them, there are protests. No one ever cared for us in Pakistan."