Clearing the air on the Kashmir imbroglio, union Home Minister Amit Shah today moved a bill seeking to effectively abolish Article 370 in the upper house of the Indian parliament. With President’s assent, Article 370, which granted a special status to the state of Jammu and Kashmir gas been scrapped from the Indian constitution.
The move comes amidst a looming uncertainty that had gripped the valley for past several days. An advisory was issued by the Jammu and Kashmir government to the Amarnath pilgrims and tourists to stall their visit further and return back as soon as possible. The Armed forces had also convened a presser a few days back revealing the heightened activities undertaken by terrorists across the border to incite tensions in the Valley. Yesterday, section 144 was imposed in the state and politicians and activists capable of whipping up anti-India sentiments were kept under house arrest.
With Article 370’s abolition, Article 35A has also been effectively rendered null and void. Article 370 had been an enabling legislation allowing the existence of Article 35A and bolstering its effectiveness.
Along with this, the government has also created two new Union Territories by bifurcating the state of Jammu and Kashmir:- Jammu and Kashmir (with Legislature) and Ladakh (without Legislature). In one fell swoop, the government has gotten rid of Nehru’s aching legacy.
BIG BREAKING: Two new Union Territories to come into being:
1. Jammu & Kashmir (with legislature)
2. Ladakh pic.twitter.com/lyl5V9ljTx
— Shiv Aroor (@ShivAroor) August 5, 2019
Article 370 deems the state of Jammu and Kashmir as an autonomous state, while the article 35A, enacted by Presidential order in 1954, empowers the state’s legislature to define “permanent residents” of the state and provide special rights and privileges to those permanent residents. The article 35A effectively proscribes Indians other than Kashmiris to acquire or hold land in the state.