The centre on Monday defended refusal of permission to Pakistani singer Adnan Sami from purchasing a property in the Capital telling the Delhi High Court that “strategic reasons” were behind the decision.
Sami had approached the court in November 2012 seeking clearance to purchase property in Delhi. He wanted the court to strike down a Reserve Bank of India circular that prohibits persons of certain nationalities including Pakistanis from buying immovable property in India without its prior permission.
”The requirement of prior permission is guided by strategic concerns. At least five properties Sami bought in Mumbai have already been confiscated for Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA) violations”, centre’s standing counsel Sumeet Pushkarna told the court.
Justice Rajiv Shakhder has now asked the RBI to take a stand and file an affidavit on the issue by July 16, the next date of hearing.
“I have been a resident of India for the past 13 years and has even sung a World Cup Cricket song for the Indian team. I am a. professional artist and is qualified to buy property in this country”, Sami’s petition said.
Acquisition of immovable property in India by person resident outside India (foreign national ) is regulated in terms of provisions of the Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA ), 1999.
The Act also recognizes the rights of person residing in India and it is under this category that Sami claimed he is eligible to purchase property.