Mehbooba Mufti likely to meet PM Modi over Article 35A

13 August, 2017, 11:23 | Author: Brenda Erickson

Rejecting Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti's claim that Jammu and Kashmir is India's crown and people of the state have rejected two nation theory, Awami Ittehad Party Chief and MLA Langate Er.

Mehbooba Mutfi, who arrived here on Thursday, met Modi in the backdrop of a raging debate over the continuity of articles 370 and 35 (A) of the Constitution that give Jammu and Kashmuir, India's only Muslim-majority state, its special status.

Ironically, while the PDP is a strong votary of continuing with the special status, its ruling partner the BJP contested elections on the plank that it would revoke the constitutional position for Jammu and Kashmir's complete integration with the rest of India.

Transcending the ideological divide, Article 35A has brought the mainstream, separatists and all other sections of society together on a common cause. After the Constitution of India came into force in 1950, Part II of the Constitution dealing with citizenship was not made applicable to Jammu and Kashmir and parliament had no power to make laws for the state on citizenship.

When Article 35A was introduced in 1954 it superseded J&K state subject law enacted by Maharaja in 1927. "The central government should tell the court that we are not going to touch the status of the articles, will deal the matter politically", he added. He further wrote, "What she said is immaterial".

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"We have to wait to see what stand the government of India and state governments take before the Supreme Court".

The BJP, which is an alliance partner in the Mehbooba Mufti-led government in the state, has been calling for the scrapping of the special provision since the party's inception in 1980.

The party accused her of being hand-in-glove with the BJP and other affiliates of the RSS in "concerted efforts" aimed at striking down Article 35A and Article 370.

Mehbooba Mufti, during her meeting with Home Minister Rajnath Singh and Prime Minister Modi, is learnt to have stressed the need to strongly defend Article 35 (A), now challenged by an NGO in the Supreme Court under a writ petition, so that the situation in Kashmir is not disturbed.

It has been 70 years since Article 370 was imposed on J&K. It also chose to appeal to the legal luminaries of occupied Kashmir to rise to the occasion and fight the case in Indian Supreme Court and engage the services of competent lawyers if necessary. She added that PM Modi "gave 100% assurance on the agenda of alliance".

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