J&K Cabinet to discuss Dogra certificate issue

Jammu and Kashmir Government on Friday said it would discuss the controversial Dogra certificate issue in the cabinet to allay apprehensions of alleged attempts to change the demography of the state.

Updated: Apr 08, 2011, 21:05 PM IST

Srinagar: Jammu and Kashmir Government
on Friday said it would discuss the controversial Dogra
certificate issue in the cabinet to allay apprehensions of
alleged attempts to change the demography of the state.

"I assure you that this issue will be discussed in the
cabinet. We will also consider inserting a column to declare
the ethnicity of the state`s residents," said senior state
minister Taj Mohiuddin.

Mohiuddin, accompanied by Revenue Minister Raman
Bhalla and his minister of state Nasir Aslam Wani, addressed
the media here a day after hardline Hurriyat Conference leader
Syed Ali Shah Geelani called for a strike on Monday against
the order to issue Dogra certificates for residents of Jammu.

Geelani had alleged that it was an attempt to change
the demography of the state and to divide Jammu and Kashmir
along religious lines.

However, Mohiuddin, who is a senior congress leader,
said the Dogra certificates were only being issued for
availing the relaxation in recruitment of paramilitary forces.

"There is a provision in the recruitment rules for
paramilitary forces where Dogras, Marathas and Kashmiris get
relaxation in height and chest width. These certificates can
be issued to anyone who falls under these categories," he
said.

He said the certificates could help increase recruitment
of the youth which would, in turn, help "curb the
unemployment" problem in the state.

The Minister also assured that the Dogra certificate
would never form the basis for issuing permanent resident
certificates.

"We will not issue these certificates to Dogras from
other parts of the country like Himachal," he added.

He said the Government was aware of the sensitivities of
the people but would not allow anybody to use this issue for
their own interests.

Mohiuddin also said that the government would do
everything to ensure that misinformation and rumours do not
lead to a repetition of 2008 Amarnath land row agitation.

PTI