Women in Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) can now buy real estate and transfer property to children, even if they get married to a non-resident as Article 35A has automatically become void with the scrapping of Article 370.
Article 35A gives the J&K government the right to decide who qualifies as a ‘permanent resident’. The permanent resident is subject to some special rights as only they can acquire land, settle, and get government jobs and scholarships in the state.
“Today, I am an equal with the men of J&K. Now, my children also are entitled to property. Despite 2002 legislation, there were still problems. This is a historic day that I will forever remember,” said Manu Khajuria, an activist who for long asked the government to amend the gender bias.
Celebrating and exchanging sweets in a locality in Jammu, a woman added, “My sister could not buy property as she had been living outside for decades and married a non-J&K resident. She was happy with this announcement. Now, she can also buy land.”
National Conference leader Farooq Abdullah had recently suggested that the state government can look at options of amending this aspect after elections. “Why did he not think of changing it till now and only after meeting the Prime Minister? What was he doing all these years,” added Khajuria.
While debate continues on the government decision, women have chosen to welcome this announcement.