First Lady Dr. Smita Murmu interacts with a delegation of prominent Kashmiri Pandit Women Members term Domicile Law as a historic milestone, express gratitude towards GoI & UT Administration
Dr. Smita Murmu, First Lady of the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir today interacted with the delegation of prominent Kashmiri Pandit Women here at Raj Bhavan.
The delegation comprising of Prof. Meenakshi Kilam, Professor JU; Prof. Veena Koul, Former Chairperson JKBOSE /Educationist; Dr Usha Kher, Dy.SP; Mrs Monika Kohli Ganju, Advocate J&K High Court, Standing Council, CBI; Mrs Usha Nakashi, Trustee, HGGT; Dr Khema Kaul, Accredited Hindi poetess, Writer; Dr Samita Bhat, Gyno-Oncologist; Dr. Neeru Kharu, Dental Surgeon/Social worker; Mrs Khushboo Mattoo, Head Radio Mirchi; Mrs Shashi Raina Bharti, Government Teacher; Ms. Punika Pandita, Young KAS Officer and Mrs Apurva Pandita, during their interaction with the First Lady expressed their gratitude towards Government of India and the UT Administration for the introduction of new Domicile Law in J&K. The members of the delegation termed the new Domicile Law of Jammu and Kashmir as historic.
During the interaction, the group thanked the UT administration and the central government for doing away with the rigid PRC law which perpetuated alienation of women who got married to a non-resident of Jammu & Kashmir. One of the emotionally charged members even equated this gender bias to a forced second migration from Jammu by the authorities at the helm of affairs at that time. They said that after Kashmiri Pandit migration in the early 1990s, it was another blow to their dignity as they were denied property, education and other similar rights in absence of a valid PRC.
The delegation discussed a host of issues with the First Lady and shared their emotional stories about the turbulent period faced by their community during the migration and the struggle they have endured to sustain their families and making their careers. They termed the opportunity as one of giving voice to the voiceless and exuded confidence that their concerns and issues would be taken care of with utmost importance.
The First Lady gave the members a patient hearing and said that the era of disparity & denial has ended with the abrogation of Article 370 and a new dawn of equality, opportunity and development for all has been ushered in J&K.