People of J-K feel cheated: Congress on land laws amendments

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Jammu, Oct 27 (PTI) Criticising the Centre over the amendments in laws allowing people from outside Jammu and Kashmir to buy land there, the Congress on Tuesday said the residents, especially the youth, 'feel cheated' by the move.

'The new land laws announced by the Centre, whereby anyone can purchase land in the Union Territory, is against the repeated assurances given by the BJP (to protect the land and jobs for locals),' the party said in a statement here.

'It is another betrayal of the BJP with the people of J&K, as time and again the people were assured that their rights to land and jobs shall be protected at all costs, even after the abrogation of Article 370. Now the cat is out of the bag and people, especially the youth, feel cheated,” the Congress said.

The Centre has paved the way for people from outside Jammu and Kashmir to buy land in the union territory by amending several laws, over a year after the nullification of Articles 370 and 35A of the Constitution.

In a gazette notification, the Centre has omitted the phrase 'permanent resident of the state' from Section 17 of the Jammu and Kashmir Development Act that deals with disposal of the land in the union territory.

Before repeal of Article 370 and Article 35-A in August last year, non-residents could not buy any immovable property in Jammu and Kashmir. However, the fresh changes have paved the way for non-residents to buy land in the union territory.

Earlier, the Congress said, the government opened the doors of jobs to outsiders through three provisions in the domicile law.

'The outside youth could get domicile through those provisions and become eligible for any job in UT. Now the apprehensions have come true and the BJP government has facilitated the sale of land to all non-J&K residents, at the cost of interests, culture and identity of people in the erstwhile Dogra State, already reduced to a union territory against wishes of all people,” the party said.

The party said it would intensify its struggle as majority of the people of Jammu and Kashmir are 'opposed to such moves' of the BJP government. PTI TAS SKL SMN