Official Aims

Aims & Objectives

To research, document, and promote an awareness of the cultural heritage of the Pahari people (Hilltonians) of Kashmir State and contiguous areas in Northern Pakistan particularly within the context of the UK; to thereby consolidate these diasporic experiences from the chronicles of oral tradition and written sources into a shared narrative that can be archived and passed down to future generations of ‘British-Paharis’, born and raised in Britain as the basis of a shared ethnogenesis;

To promote official recognition of the British-Pahari people as a distinct ethnic and linguistic group within the framework of the Race Relations Act 1976 and the Race Relations Amendment Act 2000; to thereby make formal representations on behalf of self-ascribing Paharis to be included in UK-related census statistics to preserve an ‘authentic’ British-based ethnic identity that transcends official categorizations of the Hilltonian people as either ‘ethnic’ Pakistanis or ‘ethnic’ Kashmiris (from either side of the Indo-Pak ‘Line of Control’) respectively without prejudice to individuals, organisations and/or diasporic networks that choose to espouse a primarily Pakistani or Kashmiri identity on the basis of nation state labels;

Secondary Goals

In recognition of the existence of an ethnic identity specific to the Hilltonian people in the UK, the Portmir Foundation will undertake to ameliorate the social conditions of Hilltonian communities living in deprived areas of the United Kingdom through strategic planning and partnership working in the public and private sector and in the core areas of education, health, employment and training, social housing, advocacy and citizenship;

To develop the capacities and skills of individual members of the Hilltonian communities to identify their needs within the context of their own cultural specificities to enable greater conscientious participation in the civic and social life of the United Kingdom as full and loyal citizens of the United Kingdom with special consideration being afforded to the values and principles of liberal democracy;

To promote social inclusion and prevent social exclusion; for the purposes of the clause ‘social exclusion’, exclusion denotes exclusion from society or parts of society as a result of disenfranchisement, civic non-engagement, community-insulation and a lack of opportunity for upward mobility with special regard to women marginalized in Hilltonian communities by members of the communities themselves and with regard to structural gender biases that exist within the wider mainstream society;

To promote social enterprise, philanthropy and volunteering on the part of persons and communities of Pahari descent to the advantage of all persons and peoples residing in the United Kingdom irrespective of colour, creed or race;

To mobilise the tolerant and egalitarian spirit of the Hilltonian people against the radicalisation of their communities and in particular its younger generation to highly politicised or insular religious agendas that undermine social and community cohesion; to thereby harness moderate attitudes that engender an inclusive worldview built on British liberal values that accommodate and respect members of divergent faith communities or of no religious faith;

To undertake all of the aforesaid objectives strictly on social terms and not part of any political party or ideology. 

© Copyright 2013 Portmir Foundation

All Rights Reserved

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