JAMMU: The Jammu and Kashmir administration on Saturday started the process of distributing domicile certificates among people belonging to different sections who had been living in the UT for the last seven decades but were deprived of their legitimate citizenship rights.
Jammu Divisional Commissioner Sanjeev Verma distributed the certificates under the new domicile law in a special camp organised here, an official spokesman said.
He said the recipients of the domicile certificates included West Pakistani refugees, people belonging to the downtrodden sections such as Balmiki Samaj, Gorkhas and others from R S Pura, Bishnah, Bahu, Jammu South, etc.
"With the distribution of domicile certificates, the long pending demand of the public has been fulfilled.
"People who were living in Jammu and Kashmir for many years but were deprived of citizenship rights now have equal rights as other citizens of Jammu and Kashmir," the divisional commissioner said.
Under the domicile rules, all those persons and their children who have lived for 15 years in Jammu and Kashmir or have studied for seven years and appeared in class 10 or 12 examination in an educational institution in the UT are eligible for domicile certificates.
Children of central government officials, all India service officers, officials of PSUs and autonomous body of the central government, public sector banks, officials of statutory bodies, central universities and recognised research institutes of the Centre, who have served in Jammu of Kashmir for a total period of 10 years, will also be eligible for domicile status in the UT.
Besides, all those migrants and their children who are registered with the relief and rehabilitation commissioner will be granted a domicile certificate.
Children of those residents of Jammu and Kashmir who reside outside the Union Territory in connection with their employment of business or other professional or vocational reasons have become eligible for grant of domicile status.
West Pakistan Refugees (WPRs), safai karamcharis' and children of women married outside Jammu and Kashmir are also eligible for a domicile certificate.
West Pakistani refugees were part of the parliamentary electoral roll, but not in the erstwhile state electoral roll.
They will now be covered under the 15-year residence rule or their children under the seven year /class 10/12 rule.