On 12th August, Minister of State for Home Affairs Nityanand Rai informed the Rajya Sabha that nine ancestral properties of Hindus have been restored by the Jammu and Kashmir administration since the scrapping of the special status of Jammu and Kashmir and its division into two Union Territories in 2019.
In a reply to a question the Minister cited the information provided by the government of Jammu and Kashmir, said, “Regarding restoration of properties to its rightful and original owner, 9 properties have been restored, as per the information provided by the Govt of Jammu & Kashmir”.
Steps that the government of J&K has taken to restore the properties
Responding to the question of Shiv Sena MP Anil Desai the Minister said that under the J&K Migrant Immovable Property (Preservation, Protection & Restraint on Distress Sales) Act, 1997, the District Magistrates of the concerned districts in Jammu & Kashmir are the legal custodians of the properties of migrants, and take suo moto action on eviction proceedings in cases of encroachment.
“The migrants can also request the District Magistrates in such cases” The Ministry added.
He also informed that after the abrogation of Article 370 in 2019, a total of 520 migrants have returned to Kashmir for taking up jobs under the Prime Minister’s Development Package-2015.
The altered land laws of J&K
As per the adopted land laws of Jammu and Kashmir, the government may, by notification in the official gazette, allow transfer of land, for public purposes such as education, charitable purpose, and healthcare.”
He said in his written reply that under the Jammu and Kashmir Big Landed Estates Abolition Act, 1950, the land was transferred to the tillers. The Act also prescribed a limit to the right of ownership to 182 standard kanals (22.75 acres). However, this Act has been repealed and another legislation, ‘The Jammu & Kashmir Agrarian Reforms Act, 1976’, for transfer of land to tillers, is in force. This Act prescribes a ceiling restriction of 100 standard kanals (12.5 acres).
Is permanent resident certificate required to buy non-agricultural land in J&K?
On a separate question on whether domicile or permanent resident certificates are required to buy non-agricultural land in Jammu & Kashmir, Rai said all provisions of the Constitution have been made applicable to the Union territory after August 5, 2019.