SRINAGAR: J&K Peoples Movement has vehemently opposed the issuance of Jammu and Kashmir Grant of Domicile Certificate (Procedure) Rules 2020 and said that these rules lay down the procedure for grant of Domicile Certificates.
In a statement, JKPM Vice President Feroze Peerzada said these rules are aimed at disempowering the people of Jammu and Kashmir and effecting demographic change in J&K.
“These rules are not acceptable to our party. Also, the timing of these rules is so inappropriate as the whole of J&K is in complete lockdown engaged in a battle of survival against Coronavirus,” Feroze in a statement said and added that at this point of time, there is no elected government in place in J&K wherein the legislature could have thoroughly discussed and deliberated upon eligibility criteria for availing domicile credentials.
He said that the domicile law has opened floodgates for outsiders and enabled a large number of outside residents to avail and share all the rights at par with original residents of Jammu and Kashmir.
JKPM Vice President Advocate Syed Iqbal Tahir stated that the Domicile Rules have been issued when the constitutional validity of the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganization Act 2019, is under challenge in a number of petitions before the Supreme Court.
“The government has issued Domicile Rules in the exercise of the powers granted under the said Reorganization Act,” Advocate Iqbal said and added that the new law is a major departure from the earlier position of law, under Article 35A of the Indian constitution and Section 6 of J&K constitution that empowered the J&K assembly to define a permanent resident of Jammu & Kashmir.
“The Domicile Rules require people with existing valid state subject certificates to avail Domicile Certificates under the Rules. This requirement is just so unjustified. This exercise appears to be a verification of domiciled people of Jammu & Kashmir similar to an NRC exercise. For non-residents, it has been made easy to get domicile certificate. They just need a mere ration card or a document of proof of residence and they can even apply for and receive the certificate electronically,” he said.
“On the other hand, a state subject of J&K must produce Permanent Residence Certificate which used to be issued by DC. To get a PRC, one needed to submit an affidavit and a host of documents,” Iqbal Tahir said in his statement.
Iqbal Tahir further added that under the domicile law any tehsildar in Jammu and Kashmir who fails to issue a domicile certificate to applicants on time may attract punishment of having to forfeit up to Rs 50,000 from their salary. This will act as a deterrent for any honest officer to check the misuse of the law.
JKPM believes that the domicile law is an extension of the unconstitutional and undemocratic assault carried out by the BJP Government on August 5 last year and demands immediate revocation of the Domicile Law.