Many prominent Kashmiri Pandit (KP) organisations have come in support of the government's move to allow Indians to buy land in Jammu and Kashmir, reports Times of India.
The Home Ministry on Monday (26 October) notified the new land laws in Jammu and Kashmir that paved way for any Indian to buy land in the Union Territory.
Kashmiri leaders including Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti had decried the Centre's move and alleged that it was aimed at looting land and resources of J&K and wreck its identity.
However, several organisations representing KPs in a joint statement had welcomed the governnment's decision on land laws.
The KP organisations supporting the move include Global Kashmiri Pandit Diaspora (GKPD), Roots in Kashmir (RIK), Jammu Kashmir Vichar Manch (JKVM) and Youth for Panun Kashmir (Y4PK).
JKVM President Dilip Mattoo asserted that the Kashmiri Hindu community has always kept the rights of Indians above any community or regional aspirations.
“We have chosen exodus but no compromise on the unity and integrity of this nation,” Mattoo was quoted as saying.
GKPD India coordinator Utpal Kaul said, “We are glad that equality and non-discrimination is now the policy approach in the Union Territory of Jammu & Kashmir. GKPD is convinced that this move will be a game changer to improve the overall situation as large-scale private investment is expected by big industrial houses, including some by Kashmiri Pandits. This will boost industrial production in diversified fields and open the flood gates of opportunity for the youth of the Union Territory to get skilled and employed.”
RIK spokesperson Rahul Mahanoori said that soldiers from every part of India are fighting the terror and jihad in Kashmir and thousands have laid down their lives in this fight. It was unfair till now that they had no right on the land for which they were ready to sacrifice their lives.
The best way to counter jihad in Kashmir is to give every Indian a right to settle in J&K, said Vithal Chowdhary, organising secretary for Y4PK.
Netri Bhat, a prominent woman community activist said that extension of ownership rights in J&K to all Indians was a welcome step towards the one nation, one law and one rule.
Bhat added that this would also bring in much needed investment and generate employment that will benefit the residents of the state.
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