Govt set to approve Rs 2,000 crore package for refugees from PoK | india-news | Hindustan Times
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Govt set to approve Rs 2,000 crore package for refugees from PoK

india Updated: Aug 29, 2016 00:26 IST
Pok refugees

The refugees from West Pakistan, mostly from PoK, got settled in different areas of Jammu, Kathua and Rajouri districts. However, they are not permanent residents of the state in terms of Jammu and Kashmir Constitution.(HT File Photo)

The Centre is set to approve a Rs 2,000-crore package for refugee families from Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir (PoK).

More than 36,000 refugee families — mostly comprising Hindus and Sikhs — have been living in Jammu and Kashmir.

These families crossed over to the Indian side following the wars in 1947, 1965 and 1971.

The relief for these families was first announced as part of the Rs 80,000 crore package for Jammu and Kashmir by PM Narendra Modi in November last year.

“The package is likely to get cabinet approval soon,” a home ministry official involved in the process of finalising the details said on condition of anonymity.

The Jammu and Kashmir government has identified 36,348 families eligible to get relief under the package.

“Each family is likely to get around Rs 5.5 lakh under the package,” said the official.

This package is over and above the relief provided to PoK refugees settled in Jammu and Kashmir till now. It will be treated as a one-time settlement of compensation claims by the families.

Refugee families had, however, been demanding a package of Rs 9,200 crore from the government. They had welcomed the package announced last year but had said it was only “the beginning”.

The issue of cabinet approval comes after Modi spoke about the plight of the people of PoK, Gilgit-Baltistan and Balochistan at an all-party meeting convened to discuss the prevailing crisis in the state on August 12.

The Centre has been claiming that PoK and Gilgit-Baltistan are parts of J&K and they should be taken back from Pakistan.