New Delhi: In a bid to safeguard interests
of pandits and other minorities in Jammu and Kashmir, the
National Commission for Minorities (NCM) has written to the
government to amend the NCM Act to make it applicable to the
trouble-torn state as well.
The Commission, which has been taking up the issue with
the state administration for a long time, has also written to
the state Law Minister, Ali Mohammed Sagar, in this regard.
Copies of the letter have also been submitted to Union
Home Minister P Chidambaram, Law Minister Salman Khurshid and
Chief Minister Omar Abdullah.
"The Commission recommends that J&K consider
extension of NCM Act-1992 to the state by making a
recommendation to President that an amendment may be made to
the Act to make it applicable to the state and by considering
enactment of a law for promulgation of J&K Minorities Act
along the lines of the model Act developed by this Commission
and circulated to all states," the letter said.
The panel also expressed happiness over the state
government`s contention that it was "not averse" to the
benevolent recommendations of the NCM.
NCM chairperson Wajahat Habibullah said
the commission wants that minorities in J&K get benefits
available to minorities elsewhere and has been regularly
interacting with the state government in this regard.
The state government earlier contended that complexity in
declaring any group a minority arises from the existence of a
peculiar, region-wise and community-wise composition in the
state, where no community is in minority in all the three
regions of Jammu, Kashmir and Leh.
Habibullah, however, felt that the seeming complexity can
be resolved through a dynamic combination of the NCM Act 1992.