ROQUE DIAS | NT
The state government has started making the most of the
Citizenship (Amendment) Act by exploring to step up pressure on Pakistani
citizens of Goan origin to obtain Indian citizenship. And tool is the
properties of these ‘Karachi Goans’, which have been declared as ‘enemy
The office of the South Goa district collector has
directed Salcete mamlatdar Prataprao Gaonkar to write to the Foreign
Registration Office, seeking details of more Pakistani citizens of Goan origin
vis-à-vis their properties in the state.
Sources in the collectorate office disclosed that a
meeting was held on January 28 on the matter, and the district collector
decided to identify more enemy properties in South Goa district.
Gaonkar said that he has received directions on the enemy
property issue from the district collector, adding that he will soon write to
the FRO seeking details.
However, some observers are of the view that the
government is trying to put pressure on the Pakistani citizens of Goan origin
by using the enemy property issue as a ploy so that they will obtain Indian
citizenship under the contentious CAA.
Sources said that there are ten enemy properties in
Salcete belonging to the Karachi Goans, whose ancestors migrated to Karachi and
other adjacent districts of today’s Pakistan before the Partition of India in
1947. They became Pakistani citizens after the Partition and continued to live
“Their properties were declared as enemy property as per
the order issued by the Union home ministry in 2010 under sections 5, and 24 of the Enemy Property Act 1968,” explained
an official at the South
Goa district collector office.
Of the ten enemy properties, four have been restored to original
owners after the recent directives of the Bombay High Court at Goa.
The High Court order came on three different writ
petitions filed by the aggrieved persons. The order came on the grounds of the
principle of natural justice and fair play, and also because the applicants
were not notified and that the decision was taken by the government without the
knowledge of the occupant.
The court, however, granted the liberty to the respondent
(Salcete mamlatdar) to take fresh steps in terms of the Enemy Property Act 1968
and the Enemy Property Rules 2015.
properties in Salcete include 1475 sq
mts of land surveyed under survey number
Chandor; 1725 sq mt of land (survey number 11/4) at Verna,
3950 sq mts of land — two
properties (survey number 302/5 and
302/10); 5425 sq mts of land (survey number 257/5) and 14,977 sq mts
of land in Margao near the Chowgule
Sources said that more details will be collected on these
properties to take an appropriate step on the issue.
Those enemy properties, which have been restored to
the original owners in accordance with
the HC orders, include 3650 sq mts of land at Camorlim; 2500 sq mt
of land at Benaulim, and 1575 sq mts
of land at Utorda.
The mamlatdar said that valuation of the five properties
has been done, while one enemy property in Margao is under valuation.
Source:: The Navhind Times