Temple property of ‘over 100 cr under illegal’ occupation in Kashmir

Nagender Jamwal
Even when the state government have geared up for releasing ‘encroached’ land in Jammu and its peripheries, an immovable property of temples worth Rs 100 crores under ‘illegal occupation’ in Kashmir Valley remain unattended.
According to sources, the government is pursuing ‘cherry picking’ policy with regard to drive against encroachment.
“There is huge temple property in Kashmir valley which has been occupied by the land grabbers, but the government is cleaning fists after removing teen sheds of tribal in Jammu,” said sources, adding there is a nexus between local administration and people of the Kashmir, who not only occupied the land but also erected concrete structures on it, thus shrinking the temple space to just few marlas on which structure is erected.
Talking to Newspoint, All Party Migrant Coordination Committee (APMCC), Chairman, Vinod Pandita alleges, “Over 100 crores of religious land in different parts of Kashmir valley is encroached by the people with the influence of local administration after the migration of Pandits since 1990.”
He said that several times APMCC, met various political parties’ and aware them for this encroachment and urged them to put all the shrines and boards under one umbrella and conduct CBI inquiry regarding the encroachers but all their struggle go to vain. Now they once again appeal the present government to conduct CBI inquiry in this regard, he added.
He alleged that some portion of Shamshan Bhumi situated at village Sagam, Kokernag in South Kashmir was encroached by then administration for the construction of health centre and this was done by the directions of then health minister, Syed Peerzada. Vinod Pandita said that the land of Vasu ki Nag Temple located in District Kulgam, was illegally occupied by Tourism department and constructed a hut and then converted it into mosque and added that in Fatehpura at Tehsil Dora, District Anantnag where few people encroach the land of cremation ground.
He said, “In an RTI reply to APMCC from ASI regarding the illegal occupation of temple land at Ganderbal wherein three to four local people encroaches the property of temple.”
When contacted Minister for Revenue, Relief & Rehabilitation, Syed Basharat Ahmed Bukhari and Minister of State for Transport (Independent charge), Revenue, Public Works (Roads & Buildings), Rural Development & Panchayati Raj, Agriculture Production, YSS, Sunil Kumar Sharma, they were unavailable for the comments.

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