The Senate Standing Committee on Kashmir Affairs and Gilgit Baltistan in its meeting on Monday was briefed regarding the administration of Jammu and Kashmir State Property in Pakistan; its utilization; annual income and expenditure. The meeting was held at Parliament House.
Chaired by Senator Professor Sajid Mir, the meeting was attended by Senator Nighat Mirza, Senator Najma Hameed, Senator Abdul Rehman Malik, Senator Lt. Gen (R) Salahuddin Tirmizi, Senator Mir Kabeer Ahmed Muhammad Shahi, Senator Liaqat Khan Tarakai and senior officers of the Ministry of Kashmir Affairs and Gilgit Baltistan,
The Committee was informed that the Government of Pakistan took over the management of properties in 1955 on the request of Azad Government of the State of Jammu and Kashmir. The Government of Pakistan assumed control and ownership of the said properties by promulgating Jammu and Kashmir (Administration of Property) Ordinance-III of the 1961 amendment, as amended in 1977 and 1979. Properties are divided into urban property and agricultural land. Agricultural lands have been let out to local populace; whereas urban property has been mostly rented to Kashmiri decent.
A management Committee has been set-up for maintenance of the said properties, which according to estimates will generate income worth PKR 484999 million during one Financial Year 2020-21. Records of these properties have been managed manually until now. However, the Committee was informed that the Ministry will request National Information and Technology Board (NITB) to develop software for digitization of record for easy access and safety.
Challenges faced by the Ministry regarding the maintenance of properties include illegal occupation and encroachment; low rental income; security and issues with Military Estate Office. Legal matters and civil suits are other issues that the Ministry faces. Members asserted that details of properties; violations and officers manhandled must be submitted to the Committee.
At the end of the meeting Senator Abdul Rehman Malik proposed a Resolution condemning the 465 days siege; which until now has been the longest military curfew in IIOJK. The Committee unanimously passed the Resolution and demanded that the United Nations Security Council direct the Indian Government to uplift curfew immediately.