The Narendra Modi government has proposed revocation of Article 370 and Article 35A of the Indian Constitution with Home Minister Amit Shah moving a resolution in this regard in the Rajya Sabha. Shah also said the state will be reorganised geographically.
The Centre move has come a day after it enhanced security measures across Jammu & Kashmir, including the imposition of Section 144, temporarily banning internet services and placing top political leaders in the state under house arrest.
The Bharatiya Janata Party has long advocated the abolition of the special status for Jammu and Kashmir.
Here's a brief explainer on Article 370 and Article 35A of the Indian Constitution and their relation to Jammu and Kashmir:
Article 370: It grants an autonomous status to Jammu and Kashmir and the parliament needs the state government's nod for applying laws in the state except defence, foreign affairs, finance and communications.
The law of citizenship, ownership of property, and fundamental rights of the residents of Jammu & Kashmir is different from the residents living in rest of India. Under Article 370, citizens from other states cannot buy property in Jammu & Kashmir. Under Article 370, the Centre has no power to declare financial emergency.
It is important to note Article 370(1)(c) explicitly mentions that Article 1 of the Indian Constitution applies to Kashmir through Article 370.
Article 1 lists the states of the Union. This means that it is Article 370 that binds the state of J&K to the Indian Union. Removing Article 370, which can be done by a Presidential Order, would therefore make the state independent of India.
Article 35A: It gives the the Jammu & Kashmir Legislature full discretionary power to decide who the 'permanent residents' of the state are.
It gives them special rights and privileges regarding employment with the state government, acquisition of property in the state, settling in the state, and the right to scholarships and other forms of aid that the state government provides.
It also allows the state legislature to impose any restrictions upon persons other than the permanent residents regarding the above.
To guarantee these special rights and privileges, the Article says no act of the state legislature that comes under it can be challenged for violating the Constitution or any other laws.
First Published: IST