Srinagar, Mar 16: Over 32.31 lakh people in Jammu and Kashmir have been given domicile certificates and include 1.22671 lakh persons who were not Permanent Resident Certificate holders, Minister of State for Home G Kishan Reddy said on Tuesday.

“As per information provided by the Government of Jammu & Kashmir, a total of 35,44,938 applications for issue of Domicile Certificates have been received as on 31st December 2020, out of which 32,31,353 applicants have been issued Domicile Certificates,” Reddy said in a written reply to a question by parliamentarian Balubhau alias Suresh Narayan Dhanorkar.

In a specific query by the Congress parliamentarian from Chandrapur constituency in Maharastra regarding “the total number of domicile certificates that have been issued to holders of the erstwhile Permanent Resident Certificate”, Reddy said: “As on 31st December, 2020, a total of 31,08,682 Domicile Certificates have been issued to the dependents/holders of erstwhile Permanent Resident Certificates in the UT of Jammu and Kashmir.”

In other words, 1,22,671 persons (32,31,353 minus 31,08,682) who were are not PRC holders have been issued the domicile certificate.

A total of 2,15,438 applications have been rejected, Reddy said while replying to the total number of applications that have been rejected as on 31 December and the reasons therefor.

“Rule 5 of the Jammu and Kashmir Grant of Domicile Certificate (Procedure) Rules, 2020 mandates certain documents to be annexed with the application. The applications which lack the prescribed documents are rejected,” Reddy added.

In September last year, the Jammu and Kashmir administration said the domicile certificate under the Decentralisation Act was mandatory for applying for jobs.

“The domicile certificate is for applying for jobs in Jammu and Kashmir. It does not confer right to buy land at the moment,” then Principal Secretary Revenue Pawan Kotwal told reporters in Jammu.

Separate rules will be needed to cover the issue of land rights, he had added.

Kotwal was accompanied by government spokesman Rohit Kansal at the press conference.

By September last year, the government had issued more than 12.5 lakh domicile certificates and as per Kansal “more than 99 per cent of the domicile certificates were issued to those who already had the erstwhile Permanent Resident Certificate.”

The administration has reduced the time frame for issuance of domicile certificates for PRC holders from 15 days to just five days.

“Holding a PRC is enough to get a domicile certificate. There would not be any further verification. This will accelerate the process,” he had added.

Asked about the fake PRCs issued in the past, he had said there were separate provisions of laws that deal with that aspect.

Kansal had also said while 11,000 West Pakistan refugees and 12,000 migrants had been issued domicile certificates, around 415 members of the Valmiki community and 10 from the Gurkha community have availed the document.

This post was published on March 16, 2021