August 2018 News

Article 35A: Fresh Plea In Supreme Court To Scrap J&K's Special Status, Clashes In Anantnag

27 August 2018
India Today

New Delhi: The Supreme Court is set to hear a fresh petition seeking the scrapping of Article 35A in the state of Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) today, three weeks after the case was adjourned. The Supreme Court will be hearing only a fresh petition that has been filed by a BJP leader. The main case will be heard later this week. The government of J&K had moved an application and sought to defer the hearing of the case, citing upcoming panchayat and urban local body elections. Early morning today, Jammu and Kashmir's Anantnag witnessed minor clashes ahead of the Supreme Court hearing. 'Some sections of media circulated news regarding scrapping of an article 35A. The news is refuted as baseless,' Jammu and Kashmir Police in a statement said. Article 35A: Article 35A lays down that only permanent residents of J&K shall own immovable property in the state, or get government jobs or scholarships. It empowers the state for bestowing special rights and privileges to the people. Article 35A has been protecting the culture of indigenous people of J&K and Ladakh, and their rights to own the land in the state. Introducing Article 370: Article 370 accords special rights and privileges to J&K citizens, including an exemption from constitutional provisions governing other States. It also empowers the state legislative assembly to frame any law without attracting a legal challenge. Because of the allowance by Article 370, the state of J& K has its own Constitution. Article 35A and 370 were introduced to the Constitution by the founding fathers of the nation. A non-governmental organisation, We the Citizens, filed a petitioned in the Apex Court in 2014 to abolish the law on the grounds that it was 'unconstitutional'. There are apprehensions, amongst sections of Kashmiris, that if the law is repealed or diluted, outsiders would settle in J&K.