Jammu: Jammu and Kashmir Apni Party president Altaf Bukhari on Saturday said his party will not allow non-locals to settle in the Union Territory as he criticised the administration for its ongoing anti-encroachment drive to retrieve state land.

The former minister appealed to people to maintain peace and promised to reverse all “anti-people” decisions of the administration once his party comes to power.

“We will not allow the non-locals to settle in Jammu and Kashmir. The land in J&K belongs to the people of the erstwhile state of J&K,” Bukhari said at a function here.

The function was organised to welcome PDP youth leader from Samba Sanny Sangral, who along with dozens of youth, joined Apni Party at its Gandhi Nagar headquarters.

Expressing concern over the anti-encroachment drive, he said the government has no other option but to regularise unauthorised colonies.

“Even the government in Delhi has regularised such colonies from time to time, but it seems they do not understand the issues of the poor people,” he said, criticising the BJP for delaying assembly elections in Jammu and Kashmir.

“The administration has no right to displace people from their land. If we form the next government, we will reverse anti-people decisions of the administration like stopping the darbar move practice and anti-encroachment drives,” he said.

He said the decision regarding unauthorised colonies should be left to the elected government.

Referring to the demolition of a showroom at Malik Market in Narwal area of Jammu during the anti-encroachment drive, he said 40 workers lost their means of livelihood by this “wrong decision”.

“The government should have taken action against the revenue officials who allowed the construction of the showroom in the first place besides the person who sold the land. If there was stone pelting, the government was responsible for it,” he said.

He, however, appealed to the people to maintain peace

“Our fight against the elements, who want to create division in the name of region and religion, will continue. The Apni Party is committed to bring stability, peace and prosperity,” he said.

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