- Police have ordered a probe into the alleged migration
- The relatives say the migration has been on for over a decade
- A 9-member BJP team will visit Kairana on June 15 to probe the issue
"The local people have come to me ever since I made the list public, telling me the number is too small," he explained.
The police have ordered a probe into the alleged migration after Mr Singh presented a list of 346 families from the Muslim-majority town, claiming they had to leave their homes after attacks and extortion attempts.
On basis of the list, NDTV went to 4 colonies in Kairana, trying to locate 15 people named in it. It was found that a chunk of the families had left around five years ago. A few families left two years ago after some local businessmen were murdered.
The relatives told NDTV that migration has been on for over a decade -- mostly for jobs, education, better opportunities. But law and order also had a role to play.
Mandar Jain, 73, who lives in his ancestral home in Sarvagyan colony, said his brother and nephew had left Kairana 7 years ago for better business opportunities in Panipat and Delhi.
"They had an ironware store. People would come and pick up items from there and never pay. Ultimately they had to shut shop and move. Even I have an ice cream factory here, which I want to sell and move. But the sale is stuck as no one wants to buy a factory here," he said.
The Congress and the ruling Samajwadi Party allege the BJP is giving a communal colour to the issue with an eye on the assembly election in the state, which will be held next year.
"The people are indeed fed up with crime, but there is no religious angle to it," said Congress legislator from Shamli, Pankaj Malik.
"If the administration feels I am communalising the issue, let the police come out with a name of Muslim families leaving Kairana," hit back Mr Singh. "I would suggest that Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav ask the Union home minister to send a Central team to probe this matter, if he is so sure."
A 9-member BJP team will visit Kairana on June 15 to investigate the issue.