SOURCE: RAJESH AHUJA / FOR MY TAKE / IDRW.ORG
Pakistan has been quite vocal about the possibility of demographic change in the Kashmir valley that it wants India to implement Article 35A back or bring another law that will deny any Indian right to buy or become citizens of the Muslim-dominated region. When the new Jammu and Kashmir’s new domicile law was introduced in Jammu and Kashmir, the first to object was Pakistan even though the same laws were slammed by hardcore Right-wing segment of the Modi supporters since it had the most stringent of the domicile laws that required individuals residing in the state for a minimum period of 15 years.
When individuals who have been residing in the state started getting their domicile certificates, they were immediately targeted by the Pakistan-backed terror groups. With reports of India and Pakistan having back-channel talks with Pakistan over Kashmir issues, Pakistan has upped its rants and has been pushing India for bringing back laws that could prevent the citizenship of Indians in the valley while it gets nothing on Pakistan occupied Kashmir or Gilgit-Baltistan that already has achieved demographic changes.
Pakistan already announced its intention to make Gilgit-Baltistan its 5th province and Chinese companies and its workers are already executing many projects in the area under its CPEC program. Pakistan’s repeated attempts to link talks with a deal on demographic laws for Kashmir has not received any strong rebuttal from India nor there is any clarity on talks are being held with Pakistan. Pakistani media has been coming up with subjects that were discussed with India and not rebuttal or clarity from the Modi government on what talks are being held and why? .
It’s time, Modi bites the bullet and goes ahead finishes what he had started after it removed Article 370 and Article 35A that was done to complete integration of the Kashmir valley in India and not be hostage to Pakistani demands that only end up strengthening its obsession with the Kashmir. Modi needs to start resettlement plans for Kashmiri Pandits that were kicked out of Kashmir in the 90s and start rolling The Srinagar Master Plan 2035, which seeks the construction of nearly two hundred thousand houses in the local planning area and the generation of over a million jobs. Property and get government employment laws should be further loosened and allow Special Investment Corridors for setting up of industries in the valley.
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