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Enemy Property Bill Amendment Introduced In Parliament

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A bill to amend the 48-year-old Enemy Property Act to allow the custodians to continue to hold sway over enemy properties was introduced in Lok Sabha. It proposed to amend the Enemy Property Act, 1968.

Enemy Property Bill Amendment Introduced In Parliament

Enemy property

  • The central government had designated some properties belonging to nationals of Pakistan and China as “enemy properties” during the 1962, 1965 and 1971 conflicts with the respective countries
  • The government of India vested these properties in the custodian of Enemy Property for India, an office instituted under the central government
  • The vesting of enemy property with the Custodian will mean that all rights, titles and interests in the property will vest with the Custodian.  No laws and customs governing succession will be applicable to these properties

The new Bill

  • Minister of State for Home Affairs Kiren Rijiju moved the Enemy Property (Amendment and Validation) Bill in Lok Sabha
  • The new bill allows the property to be returned to the owner if it is found not to be an enemy property
  • The bill allows the custodian to sell or dispose the property within specific time irrespective of the Judgements of any court
  • The bill prohibits all transfers by enemies and renders transfers that had taken place before or after the commencement of the 1968 Act as void
  • The Bill also removes the provision that empowers the custodian to maintain the enemy and his family if they are in India from the income derived from the property
  • The custodian can not only divest enemy properties but also fix and collect rent and license fee from enemy property, evict unauthorized occupants and removing unauthorized construction from such properties