As per the Jammu and Kashmir Center and Administration organized, Jammu Real Estate Summit today any citizen of India can now buy non-agriculture land in Jammu and Kashmir.
However, Local protesters and regional political parties have accused the center of “putting J&K up for sale”.
Removal of Special status for J&K
Previously, Outsiders who were not classified as ‘permanent residents’ were barred from purchasing or owning land but this was changed after the center scrapped Article 370 in August 2019, thereby removing special status for Jammu and Kashmir.
Jammu and Kashmir Real Estate Summit
The Jammu and Kashmir Real Estate Summit was organized jointly by the Union Ministry for Housing and Urban Affairs and the Jammu and Kashmir administration.
During which officials said 39 MoUs, or Memorandum of Understandings, were signed; 19 dealt with the construction of residential homes.
The Government called it a “historical transformation in J&K”. It said that the government had changed laws to allow external investment in J&K, including the purchase of non-agricultural land.
The agenda for the conference said, “Under the new J&K Development Act, the term ‘being a permanent resident of the State’ as a criteria has been omitted, paving the way for investors outside J&K to invest.”
As per reports from NDTV, “Last week the J&K administration, headed by Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha, changed land use laws and allowed re-classifying agricultural land for non-agricultural purposes. The decision triggered strong criticism from regional parties, who said the land would be used to settle non-locals.”
Further, recently the center told Parliament that only seven plots of land had been purchased in J&K following the scrapping of special status. Allowing people from outside J&K to buy land in the UT was one of the major talking points for the BJP and the center, but so far that doesn’t seem to be the case.
Meanwhile, protests were taken to the road against the summit and demands for the restoration of constitutional safeguards and statehood.
“J&K is being put up for sale. They are trying to change our demography, history, identity and culture. We don’t accept any such development which changes the character of J&K. They are auctioning J&K,” Sunil Dimple, President of Mission Statehood J&K, said.