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Petitioner challenging Article 35-A claims “anecdotal evidence”of being resident of JK.

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The petitioner behind the second challenge to Article 35A of the Constitution, which accords special rights and privileges to residents of Jammu and Kashmir, says she has “anecdotal evidence” to suggest her family is originally from Kashmir, and that they had left it 200 years ago, Indian Express reported.

Charu Wali Khanna, a lawyer and former member of the National Commission for Women, filed the petition against Article 35A in the Supreme Court after the J&K government refused to identify her as a permanent resident because she didn’t have any documentary evidence to prove her claim. The apex court has clubbed her plea with a petition challenging the constitutional validity of the provision.

Admitting she doesn’t have any documentary proof to suggest her family is from Kashmir, only “anecdotal”, Khanna says, “But I am telling them (the J&K government) why are you questioning me, questioning my identity. It is impossible for me to trace what happened 200 years ago. My father is 98… Madan Mohan Kishan Wali. He has anecdotal evidence.” The petition that Khanna has filed at the Supreme Court says, “Being a Kashmiri Pandit woman by ancestry (Khanna) desires to build a home in J&K, in order to re-discover her roots, but due to the peculiar discriminatory laws, is unable to purchase property in J&K being a Non-Permanent Resident.”

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