BENGALURU: Decades after they migrated to Jammu & Kashmir from Pakistan-occupied areas (POK) of J&K and Chhamb, more than 36,000 families are awaiting the financial aid approved by the Centre in 2016 as part of a Rs 2,000 crore package.
Each of the families, now settled in Rajouri, Jammu and Kathua, was to get Rs 5.5 lakh.
Five months after the Cabinet meeting chaired by PM Narendra Modi cleared the package for 36,384 families, only Rs 9.33 crore — 0.4% of the package — has been disbursed, reaching 170 families with Aadhaar-linked bank accounts.
The families were displaced from POK in 1947 (Partition) and from Chhamb after the 1965 and 1971 wars.
According to information accessed by the ministry of home affairs, "...The central assistance is being directly disbursed to Aadhaar-linked bank accounts of eligible beneficiaries".
Organisations fighting for the betterment of these families — All State Pandit Conference and J&K Sharanarthi Action Committee — say linkage to Aadhaar is only delaying the process.
According to UIDAI, J&K is among the states with the lowest enrolment. Dr T K Bhat, general secretary of the All State Pandit Conference, told TOI from Jammu: "Our demand was for more than Rs 9,000 crore. We are one of the oldest organisations fighting for migrants' rights and we know the ground realities... We stand in long queues but don't get Aadhaar."
A Kashmiri working in Bengaluru, who did not want to be named, said unlike in other states, authorities in J&K don't give acknowledgements when one applies for Aadhaar.
Besides these refugees, there are another 62,001 registered Kashmiri migrant families displaced since the 1990s when insurgency was at its peak in the Valley who are in need of financial assistance.