Return land no longer needed by Army: Mehbooba Mufti to Nirmala Sitharaman

Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti on Sunday sought the intervention of Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman for the return of the state land which is no longer required for operational purposes by the Army. Mufti had a one-on-one meeting with Sitharaman at Pahalgam in south Kashmir’s Anantnag district where the defence minister had come to attend a meeting of the executive council of Jawahar Institute of Mountaineering and Winter Sports, an official spokesman said. During the meeting with Sitharaman, the chief minister brought several issues pertaining to defence to the Union minister’s notice.

The chief minister pressed for the speeding up of cases of revision and payment of rent in respect of the land owners of High Ground, Anantnag whose land is being used by the Army, the spokesman said.

He said the chief minister also sought intervention of the defence minister for the return of pockets of land which are no longer required for operational purposes by the Army.

Sitharaman assured Mufti to look into the issue of revision and payment of rent to the land owners of High Ground, Anantnag. She regretted the delay and inconvenience caused all these years to the land owners who have not been paid rent, the spokesman said.

Sitharaman said that it was only during her first meeting with Mufti recently that her attention was drawn towards this issue by the chief minister.

A delegation of land owners also met the defence minister and apprised her of their problem, the spokesman said.

Sitharaman assured the delegation that she would try to fast track their case of rent payment and revision, he said.

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