Winter Session of Parliament: Jammu and Kashmir UT includes PoK, says Union Minister G Kishan Reddy in Lok Sabha

New Delhi: The Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir comprises the territories of the Indian State of Jammu and Kashmir immediately before the commencement of the Constitution, except Ladakh, but includes Pakistan occupied Kashmir, Union Minister G Kishan Reddy said on Tuesday.

Reddy said in the Lok Sabha that the territory of the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir comprised the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir immediately before the commencement of the Constitution of India.

 Winter Session of Parliament: Jammu and Kashmir UT includes PoK, says Union Minister G Kishan Reddy in Lok Sabha

File image of the Parliament of India. AP

He said in accordance with the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Act, 2019, and subsequent notification under Section 103 of this Act dated November 2, 2019, the territories of both the successor Union Territories have been specified.

"The UT of Ladakh comprises two districts, namely Leh and Kargil. The Leh district includes the Gilgit, Gilgit Wazarat, Chilhas and Tribal Territory districts that are under illegal occupation of Pakistan.

"The UT of Jammu and Kashmir comprises the territories of the Indian State of Jammu and Kashmir immediately before the commencement of the Constitution of India, except the areas specified under the UT of Ladakh. These include areas of other districts that are under illegal occupation of Pakistan," he said in a written reply to a question.

Accordingly, the minister said the Survey of India has published the new political map of the country showing the areas under the new Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir and the new Union Territory of Ladakh.

Replying a separate question, Reddy said the National Commission for Schedule Tribes has recommended that the newly created UT of Ladakh be brought under the Sixth Schedule of the Constitution.

However, he said that according to the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Act, 2019, the Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council Act, 1997, as amended from time to time, continues to be applicable in the successor Union Territory of Ladakh.

The LAHDC Act, 1997, provides for establishment of Autonomous Hill Development Councils in the Ladakh region. Autonomous Hill Development Councils came into existence in Leh in 1995 and in Kargil in 2003.

"The powers given to these councils are more or less in line with the Sixth Schedule of the Constitution. After the amendment of the LAHDC Act, 1997 in 2018, these councils are perhaps the most empowered Autonomous Hill Development Councils in the country," Reddy said.

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Updated Date: Dec 03, 2019 20:12:12 IST