Sharma moves proposal to seek citizenship rights for militant families

Sharma moves proposal to seek citizenship rights for militant families
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Afaq Bhat
Srinagar, Feb 22: The Kashmir Interlocutor Dineshwar Sharma is believed to have moved a proposal asking the central government to grant citizenship rights to the families of the militants who have returned from Pakistan administered Kashmir during the past few years.
Sources told Precious Kashmir the Interlocutor Sharma moved the proposal after meeting the families of the militants during his visit to north Kashmir. “The families of the militants informed him (Sharma) that they were assured proper rehabilitation after they return. But till date no heed has been paid towards rehabilitating them and they are being made to run from pillar to post.”
The families, according to the sources, had told Sharma that if they cannot be provided with the citizenship they should be allowed to return to Pakistan administered Kashmir.
Sources said that after getting the feedback from the ground, Sharma discussed the issue with the Jammu and Kashmir government. “Sharma was informed that the youth who had crossed over to PaK in nineties for arms training chose to stay back and did not return. The erstwhile NC-Congress regime had formulated a rehabilitation policy for them and had asked them to return. Most of the people who have returned chose Nepal route to comeback and since then their fate is hanging in balance,” sources added.
They said, “After threadbare discussions with the state government Sharma moved a proposal to seek citizenship rights for them.”
An official said that Ministry of Home Affairs is studying the proposal moved by the Interlocutor. “A few people have expressed reservations about the move and are opposing the idea to grant the citizenship rights to the families of the militants,” he added.
Sources said, “MHA would have given its nod to the proposal if the situation in the Valley would have been normal. Another factor which is making the MHA reconsider the proposal is the tense situation on the borders and the Line of Control.”
Insiders revealed that Jammu and Kashmir government too is trying its best to ensure that proposal moved by Sharma is approved by the Central government as it would prove to be a shot in the arm of ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and it could project the citizenship to militant families as one its major achievements. “We are hopeful that MHA would give its nod. These families have been suffering since their return. Granting citizenship rights to them would help them in mitigating their sufferings. It would also encourage the other people to return home,” said a PDP leader.