Three sites have been identified by the Jammu and Kashmir government for setting up colonies for displaced Pandits adn the same has been conveyed to Union Home Ministry for assessment.
The land chosen for the establishment of colonies mostly belongs to private owners and government has allegedly approached them for direct sale of land for construction of dwelling units for the rehabilitation of KPs.
The lands have been Identified in North, Central and South Kashmir. The land in North Kashmir’s Baramulla district is spread over more than 200 kanals at Kanispora Johema on the outskirts of Baramulla and is close to the national highway and railway station.
Union Home Ministry officials have also given a nod to this proposal by the state govt. and have further advised them to finalize the land on urgent basis so that the construction works can be initiated.
There are about 62,000 registered Kashmiri Pandit families in the country, who migrated from the Valley due to the onset of militancy in Jammu and Kashmir in the early 1990s.
About 40,000 registered Kashmiri migrant families are living in Jammu, around 20,000 in Delhi-NCR and about 2,000 families are settled in other parts of the country.
While KPs are glad to hear of this latest development, a section is are not very happy with the news of Land identification pouring in as revealed by the statements coming from JKLF chief, Yasin Malik and Hurriyat chief, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq.
Notably, the proposed construction of Pandit colonies has been opposed by the separatists including octogenarian leader Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and High court bar association.
JKLF chief Yasin Malik recently in a press conference warned the government against such colony in Kashmir.The separatists have been opposing the return of Kashmiri Pandits from the day one.
The Opposition National Conference also opposed the setting up of separate colonies for the migrant Kashmiri Pandits in the Valley.
“We have always welcomed that migrant Kashmiri Pandits should be rehabilitated and return to their homes and live with the Muslims. But we are against the establishment of separate colonies for them which will widen the gap between various communities,” NC General Secretary Ali Mohammad Sagar told Media Sources