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Wednesday 22 January 2020

PoK-origin Kashmiris to get Rs 5.5 lakh each to settle in J-K

When Prime Minister Narendra Modi had made the announcement to this effect in 2016, the list of 5,300 Kashmiris from PoK was not yet ready, said Information & Broadcasting Minister Prakash Javadekar

In a significant move, sending a strong message about the government’s Kashmir policy to domestic as well as international critics after the scrapping of Article 370, the Union Cabinet headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi today decided to pay Rs 5.5 lakh to every displaced Kashmiri from Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK).

The decision will benefit 5,300 Kashmiris who migrated from PoK and settled in different states of India but returned to the Valley.

Those displaced from PoK but not settled in Jammu and Kashmir yet are being encouraged to come to the newly formed union territory, too, with this financial assistance of Rs 5.5 lakh each from the Centre. This is a concession of an old demand of Kashmiris of PoK origin.

The name of these 5,300 families was not initially included in the list of the displaced. But now the Central Government has decided that their names will be included in the list and financial assistance will be given.

After the Cabinet meeting, Information and Broadcasting Minister Prakash Javadekar told reporters, “In the year 2016, the Prime Minister had announced a package of Rs 5.5 lakh per family for those displaced from PoK. But then, 5,300 families could not join it because they were out of Jammu and Kashmir and their names had not come up.”

Javadekar said that 5,300 families have been included in today’s decision. The minister said that justice had been done to these families with this decision. The decision, he said, would be welcomed in the entire Kashmir Valley.

The minister said that there were many displaced groups in Jammu and Kashmir. Among them is a group of migrants who arrived in the curtailed landmass of India after 1947. The second group is that of the displaced who came after the merger of Jammu and Kashmir.

There were 5,300 such families who came from PoK but had migrated to other states. The minister said that those who came back to Jammu and Kashmir are entitled to the facility announced today.

It was the same Cabinet meeting where the decision to increase dearness allowance by 5% was taken.

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