K-P Home and Tribal Affairs Department will take action. PHOTO: EPA/FILE
PESHAWAR: Many Afghans in Pakistan live in refugee camps. Those who own property in the country could soon be similarly homeless, as the government wants to take away their right to own property.
The Federal Board of Revenue, in collaboration with the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Home and Tribal Affairs Department, will verify and then take action to block the sale of property to Afghans in Pakistan, it has been learnt. The board will also form a strategy for property that has already been sold.
In a statement issued by the province’s home and tribal affairs department, it was said that the board of revenue will ‘expedite’ the verification of the home department’s order to block all land transactions of Afghans who live in Pakistan. In addition, the Board of Revenue will identify property sold to Afghan nationals and share the findings with the home department to take necessary action.
The original decision was taken by a special meeting of the provincial cabinet, held on January 30 under the Afghan Management and Repatriation Strategy. Speaking to The Express Tribune, Home Secretary Azam Khan said that his department was waiting for the decision to be made by the board of revenue as to what would be done once the details of Afghan property owners come to light.
“It’s not clear at the moment whether their property will be confiscated and turned into the property of the state. We are waiting for the board of revenue (to take a decision),” he said, adding that according to a similar order in 1982, Afghans were not permitted to buy property in Pakistan.
Published in The Express Tribune, February 15th, 2012.