A workshop was organised on the “Socio-Economic Impact of the Enemy Property (Amendment and Validation) Bill, 2010” by the Institute of Social and Cultural Studies, at the Seminar Hall, Academy of Fine Arts Kolkata on December 18, 2010.
Two papers, one by Advocate Joydip Roy of the Calcutta High Court and another by Dr. Sumanta Hira, ex-member of West Bengal Legislative Assembly were presented at the workshop. In his welcome address Advocate Joydip Roy highlighted the background and the present status of the ‘Enemy Property Bill – 2010’.The Bill proposes to allow Indian legal heirs to inherit the properties of relatives who migrated to Pakistan after Partition. He observed that the present UPA government is bringing amendments, forced by a strong Muslim lobby led by Minority Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid. Others also observed that the present Bill seems to be very much guided by Congress’s Muslim centric vote-bank politics and its planned revival in the State of Uttar Pradesh. The said Bill will make one Raja of Mahmoodabad MA Mohammad Aamir Ahmed Khan the biggest beneficiary, who may get control over his father’s 1,400 properties out of 2,168 enemy properties across the country. It must be noted that the Raja of Mahmoodabad was represented in the Supreme Court by counsels like Union Minister Salman Khurshid and Congress Party spokesman Abhisekh Manu Singhvi.
Eminent speakers like Shri Tathagata Roy of the BJP, Prof. Bimal Paramanik of the Indo-Bangla Research Centre and ex-Sector Commander of the 1971 Bangladesh Liberation War, Prof. Mohit Roy of Jadavpur University also participated in the workshop. Shri Arindam Mukherjee, one of the organisers sighted the nature of non co-operation faced by them from the Department of Enemy Property (custodian of Enemy Property in India) prior to holding of the workshop.
Dr. Gurupada Sandilya, Director of the institute participated in the discussions in spite of his severe illness. Prof. Gaur Gorai the Chairman while concluding the workshop highlighted some of the future and upcoming programmes of the institute.
Prof. Rabiranjan Sen conducted the proceedings of the afternoon.