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Shadows of Article 35(A)

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The shadows of Article 35(A) being challenged in different courts have shown that it has an impact on the overall turf mainstream politics in J&K State. Working President of National Conference and former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah said that to use only these elections as the reason to delay the decision on the Article 35(A) is not enough. He said that people of Jammu and Kashmir want to know what the is the position of Central Government on the fate of Article 35(A).

Omar said the core group had a detailed discussion about prevailing situation in the state with particular reference to Article 35-A of the Constitution.  It was felt that any tinkering with Article 35-A would prove disastrous not only for our state but for the entire country. He said the stands of the central government and the present dispensation in Jammu and Kashmir before the Supreme Court goes ‘clearly against the wishes and aspirations of the people of the state’.

They conveniently ignore that this provision was incorporated in the Constitution after thorough discussion between the then state government and the Government of India and was made part of the Delhi Agreement 1952, he said.  It was also approved by the state’s constituent assembly as envisaged under article 370 of the Constitution.  Abdullah said the core group resolved that J&K National Conference would fight tooth and nail all ‘sinister’ attempts aimed at interfering with this constitutional guarantee.

Former chief minister and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) president Mehbooba Mufti has also said clubbing the contentious issue of Article 35A with the upcoming panchayat and urban local body elections in Jammu and Kashmir was a “disastrous idea” by the Central government. She made the statement hours after National Conference (NC) announced its decision to boycott the elections until the Centre clarified its stance on the issue.

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