Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan has called out India’s new domicile policy in Jammu and Kashmir, terming it “illegal and in violation of UNSC resolutions and international law, including 4th Geneva Convention”.
In a series of tweets, Khan said: “I have approached the UN Secretary General and am reaching out to other world leaders. India must be stopped from this unacceptable path, that further usurps the legal and internationally guaranteed rights of the Kashmiri people and seriously imperils peace and security in South Asia”.
First India's attempt at illegal annexation of IOJK & now its attempts to alter IOJK's demographic structure incl by issuance of domicile certificates to 25,000 Indian nationals are all illegal, in violation of UNSC resolutions & international law, incl 4th Geneva Convention.— Imran Khan (@ImranKhanPTI) June 30, 2020
Earlier, the Independent Permanent Human Rights Commission (IPHRC) of the Organisation for Islamic Cooperation (OIC) condemned “alleged Indian attempts to alter the demographic makeup of Jammu and Kashmir via the issuing of Grant of Domicile Certificates”.
The matter has come to the fore this week after India started distributing domicile certificates to the people from outside Jammu and Kashmir. As per the government data, at least 25,000 people have received domicile certificates, after applying on 18 May.
As per the official data, 32,000 applications were filed in 10 districts of the Hindu-majority Jammu region in the south. In Doda district, with Muslims comprising 53.81 percent of the population, the highest number (8,500 certificates) has been issued. In Rajouri, which has a 62.71 percent Muslim population, up to 6,213 domicile certificates were issued. As many as 6,123 residency certificates were issued in Poonch, which has a 90.44 percent Muslim population.
In the Kashmir region, which is about 96.4 percent Muslim, of a total of 720 applications, 435 certificates have been issued.
In April, India announced a new domicile policy for the integration of Jammu and Kashmir with the mainland. Under the new policy, government jobs will be reserved for domiciles of Jammu and Kashmir. Domicile certificate is a kind of citizenship right which grants authority to work in local government offices which till last year was reserved only for the Jammu and Kashmir population.
Redefining the conditions for attaining domicile, the government said “whoever has resided for a period of fifteen years in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir or has studied for a period of seven years and appeared in class for the 10th/12th examination in an educational institution located in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir"
The announcement came months after India revoked the special status of Jammu and Kashmir under Article 370 of its constitution in order to make it part of mainland India. Pakistan has been accusing India of human rights violations in Kashmir, as it also lays claim to the territory. Part of Jammu and Kashmir is controlled by Pakistan.