The Global Kashmiri Pandit Diaspora (GKPD) has welcomed and applauded the move of the Narendra Modi government to ensure equal and fair application of the right to property in Jammu and Kashmir.
For over 70 years now, residents of Jammu and Kashmir have enjoyed the right to property across India, including even the ability to acquire land for non-residential and farming purposes. However, this right has never been made available to the residents of other Indian states with respect to acquiring property for residential usage in J&K.
Acquisition of land parcels for industrial and commercial usage had been made permissible and upheld by successive governments in the state, including those led by the PDP and the NC.
Given the needs for ensuring rapid, equitable development of J&K, the move to allow investors to acquire land for residential purposes is a logical extension of the policies of earlier, popularly elected governments of the state.
The GKPD said the misuse of the ‘domicile’ and ‘permanent resident’ clause as a political weapon to ensure the dominance of a separatist ideology has been at the core of the problems of J&K.
The depraved and morally unconscionable practice of depriving those who have worked for their entire life in J&K from settling down in the state was the equivalent of ‘property apartheid’.
“We are glad that equality and non-discrimination is now the policy approach in the UT of J&K. GKPD applauds and congratulates Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his council of ministers for the sagacity and wisdom of this move,” a statement said.
GKPD has urged all critics of this move to shed their ideological, partisan blinkers that foist and provide oxygen to the separatist narrative that has led to Islamist terrorism in Kashmir Valley and led to the killings of thousands of innocent people, including ordinary, hardworking Kashmiris.
The fact that agricultural land has been kept out of the ambit of the recent move and will continue to be available for acquisition only to the residents of the UT is an apt move to ensure that such land is not usurped for rapid and mindless urbanisation.
The Jammu region has vast industrial and religious-tourism potential, and this move will lead to rapid economic development for the people of region too.
GKPD is convinced that this move will be a big game changer to improve overall situation as large scale private investment is expected by big industrial houses, including Kashmiri Pandits, which will boost industrial production in diversified fields and will open flood gates of vast opportunities to the youth of the UT to get skilled and employed, it said.