'PoK refugees won't be dispossessed of land'
7 May 2005
Jammu: Seeking to end the controversy over the Resettlement Act, Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed on Saturday said the refugees from Pakistan-occupied Kashmir would not be dispossessed of their land or property allotted to them. 'Nobody from across the border has claimed property in the State and reports of Firida Gani from Muzaffarabad claiming her 'ancestral property' are untrue. Even if one presumes that somebody from that side would claim rights over property in the State, he-she would have to first establish credentials as a citizen of India and the Union Home Ministry alone would verify such a claim,' he told presspersons here. The Evacuee Property Act defended the rights of the refugees and 'no power could dispossess them' of their property, Mr. Sayeed said. The issue sparked off a political controversy with political parties and social organisations taking to the streets to protest against any attempt to implement the Act that paved the way for the return of migrants to PoK and re-claim their property in the State.