Jammu: The BJP has said that it will not allow Kashmiri Pandits to become "scapegoats" after the Jammu and Kashmir Lieutenant Governor announcement that no salary will be paid to the Pandit employees who are not attending their duties in the Kashmir valley.

Around 6,000 such employees are on protest for the last seven months following targeted terrorist attacks in the valley. The employees say they fear for their lives and can't go back to Kashmir so long there is fear of attacks.

On Wednesday, Lt Governor Manoj Sinha said said no salary will be paid to these employees. He said he was sending a “loud and clear message to Kashmiri Pandit employees and they should listen and understand”.

The announcement led to massive protests by Pandit employees and also employees from the reserved categories who have refused to work in Kashmir following terrorist attacks.

Today, Kashmiri Pandit employees staged a massive protest outside the BJP headquarters in Jammu.

Addressing them, Ravinder Raina, the BJP president for Jammu and Kashmir, took a dig at Lt Governor Manoj Sinha and asked him to meet the protesting employees.

“With hands folded, I make a request to Lt Governor; please call a delegation of Kashmiri Pandits and Reserved Category employees to Raj Bhavan. At least listen to them once,” said Mr Raina, “When you (Lt Governor) listen to them you will know the reality of ground situation."

Mr Raina said the Lt Governor may not have been properly briefed. “Perhaps, bureaucrats have failed to give proper briefing. That's the reason such statement has come from you,” said Mr Raina.

Earlier, Pandit leaders who participated in the protest outside the BJP office challenged Lt Governor Manoj Sinha to post his child or daughter in Kashmir in such situation.

Dr Agnishekhar, a prominent Pandit leader, accused the government of using Pandits as a "sacrificial goat" when there are targeted attacks and fresh threats. “Will the Lt Governor wish to see his daughter posted in Kashmir in such a situation? Does any deputy commissioner move around in Kashmir without security?” he said.

He said Pandits leaving Kashmir reflects a failure of security.

BJP's Ravinder Raina assured the Pandits that senior leaders of the party are arriving in Jammu tomorrow (Saturday) to meet the community leaders.