January 2017 News

Mehbooba On Kashmir's Special Status: Abrogating Article 370 Will Be Biggest Anti-national Work

30 January 2017
Firstpost
Sameer Yasir

Jammu: Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti on Monday labelled the people - including members of her alliance partner BJP - anti-nationals for trying to abrogate special status enjoyed by the state under the Indian Constitution by using the judiciary and creating an atmosphere of insecurity. 'If we injured the spirit of Article 370, there won't be bigger anti-national work than this. Those people, who are trying to do that, are the biggest anti-nationals and we shall fight them,' Mehbooba said, while speaking in Jammu and Kashmir Assembly on Monday. Mehbooba said she was aware of 'some people' trying to use the judiciary to harm Article 370 of the Indian Constitution, thereby creating an atmosphere of insecurity in the state and vitiate the atmosphere. 'I know there have been attempts made to use the judiciary to try to play with the spirit of Article 370, but they, who are doing it, don't know they are harming India and its interests,' she added. On Saturday, former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah had warned Mehbooba in the legislative assembly that BJP was planning to use judiciary for 'bulldozing state's special position guaranteed under Article 370.' 'Those, who among us, think BJP has given up the issue of Article 370 are mistaken as they have realised that it can't undo Article 370 through legislature but will do it through judicial means, conceding that it could not use legislature to do so,' Omar Abdullah had said. Mehbooba on Monday said that the moment someone tries to abrogate 'this uniqueness of Jammu and Kashmir', it will have an adverse impact in the valley and will encourage people who want to settle people of one colour and one religion in the Valley. 'This Muslim majority state should send a message to the world and answer Donald Trump's Muslim ban by welcoming Kashmiri Pandits to Valley. Kashmir cannot be allowed to become another Syria or Afghanistan,' she added. Many right-wing NGOs and think tanks have sought legal intervention to abrogate article 370. This has triggered a furious debate over identity politics in the state and is also seen as one of the reasons being the 2016 unrest. Earlier this month, the state government had to challenge a PIL filed in the Delhi High Court by Advocate Surjeet Singh arguing that the amendment made to Article 368 of constitution shall be made applicable to the state of J&K. But the court prima facie observed that Delhi HC has no jurisdiction to it, to which the counsel for other side responded that judges of the High Court take oath under constitution of J&K. The high court had recently challenged provisions of Article 370, while hearing a PIL, which challenged the Constitution Order 1954 that adds a proviso to Article 368 of the Indian Constitution. The proviso to Article 368 (power of Parliament to amend the Constitution and procedure thereof) says 'no such amendment shall have effect in relation to the Jammu and Kashmir unless applied by order of the President under clause (1) of Article 370'. Article 370 grants special autonomous status to the State of Jammu and Kashmir which makes it clear that any law, including Constitution amendments, will not be applicable to the State unless applied by an order of the President under this article. Former Chief Minister Omar has also alleged that it was not the Agenda of Alliance document of ruling PDP-BJP coalition government, but National Security Advisor Ajit Doval's doctrine which is being implemented in the state of Jammu and Kashmir. 'The state is run by Mufti (Mohammad Sayeed) Doctrine. I don't know any Doval Doctrine or Dulat Doctrine, but if any doctrine helps us to implement Mufti Doctrine, I will welcome that,' Mehbooba said.

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