October 20, 2021

The World Live Breaking News Coverage & Updates IN ENGLISH

The World Live Breaking News Coverage & Updates IN ENGLISH

Drive to help Pandits reclaim lost assets triggered killings: Agencies

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Drive to help Pandits reclaim lost assets triggered killings: Agencies
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Drive to help Pandits reclaim lost assets triggered killings: Agencies
Drive to help Pandits reclaim lost assets triggered killings: Agencies

SRINAGAR: The J&K administration’s drive to help Kashmiri Pandits reclaim properties that fell into the hands of “land sharks” and “interlopers” in the wake of their 90s exodus could have been a trigger for the renewed terror attacks on minority communities in the erstwhile state, say intelligence agencies.
Deputy commissioners of various districts had received 5,600-odd complaints of landgrab and encroachment through the designated web portal within three weeks of its launch by lieutenant governor Manoj Sinha on September 7. Around 2,200 such complaints ostensibly filed by Kashmiri Pandits and others have already been processed, according to official data.
Most of these complaints are about land and houses belonging to Kashmiri Pandits being either wrested or sold off at throwaway prices three decades ago. Sinha has directed the Union Territory administration to ensure “time-bound redress” of landgrab and other property-related grievances of around 44,000 “migrant families”. Of these, 40,142 families are Hindus, 2,684 Muslims and 1,730 Sikhs, officials said.
“The administration has freed 41 ‘kanals’ (20 ‘kanals’ make a hectare) in just three weeks in Anantnag district alone. We have also processed nearly 400 of the 1,000 complaints filed in the south Kashmir district in less than a month. Around 95% of the complaints were found to be fake,” a top official said.
In 1997, the then Farooq Abdullah-led National Conference government had passed a legislation titled Migrant Immovable Property (Preservation, Protection and Restraint on Distress Sales) Act. The law banned the distress sale of properties owned by those forced to flee J&K in the face of selective killings by terror outfits in the early 90s, but was never enforced in spirit, an official said.
Intelligence agencies claim the recent attacks on Kashmiri Pandits and Sikhs by Pakistan-backed Lashkar-e-Taiba affiliate TRF are in retaliation to the administration’s campaign to “right a wrong”. The terror outfit, which had announced its arrival last year by targeting applicants for domicile certificates, has shot dead a prominent Kashmiri Pandit businessman, a Kashmiri Sikh school principal, her Pandit colleague and a migrant food vendor in Srinagar within a week.

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