The former Jammu & Kashmir state will now see Development, Political empowerment and Dignity…
Shri Ram Madhav, National General Secreatay of Bharatiya Janata Party addressed citizens at a platform organized by Jammu & Kashmir Study Center, the Karnataka Chapter at Vasavi Vidya Niketan Degree College on Saturday. The lecture was titled-‘Historical Undoing of a Historical Blunder Article 370,” focusing about the constitutional backdrop of Article 370 and the way forward for the development of the new union territories- Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh, respectively.
Constitutional History of Art 370
When Article 306 A was produced in front of the Congress Working Committee, the leaders rejected the move of providing special status to the state of Jammu & Kashmir. Sardar Patel was given the task of convincing the CWC to get the same passed by Nehru and was thus cleared by CWC. Ram Madhav criticises this move stating that “It came because Nehru’s fanciful dreams had to be honored.”
About the relationship between Nehru and Sheikh Abdullah, he said Article 370 was passed in the constitution with only 4 nominated members of National Conference voting in favour of the same, which further proved its undemocratic nature.
He emphasized that “although this law came in without the approval of anybody, the article was abrogated constitutionally which stated that any changes / abrogation can be made by President’s order. Accordingly, it was presented in front of the Parliament and was abrogated by the majority's will.
Due to the provisions of Article 370, non-Kashmiris were not entitled to own land. This was a major factor for the former state to be industrially backward. Only government hospitals were functional. In addition to this, public sector units could also not be set up as officials from other states were considered as non-state subjects resulting in no access to land, government schools, ration cards, etc.
The state was in the hands of the Mufti family and Abdullah family. Thus, grassroots had to be empowered. The Panchayats didn’t have any power. Although the 73rd and 74th amendment of Rajiv Gandhi’s tenure was introduced to empower panchayats by providing funds directly from Centre, it could never be employed in the former state because of Article 370. Today, a vibrant Panchayat system is functional in the former state with democratic participation of multiple national and local political parties, irrespective of the two influential families boycotting panchayat elections.
There are people who have been living in the state for 70 years now because they are treated as non-state subjects. Dr. Manmohan Singh was a refugee from Punjab, who emerged as the Prime Minister of India.
He believes that the government will strive hard to take the fruit of development to the last man in the state. He believes that good governance will speak for itself.
The union territiory status of Ladakh was a long pending demand of the people of the region and he believes that Ladakh will now develop at a faster pace.
With regard to the Kashmiri Pandit exodus, he said that the BJP-led government had created over 7000 jobs in the former state, of which 3500 jobs had been taken up by them. Thus, security had to be beefed up for their rehabilitation and their safe return.
Delimitation will come into effect soon. The bifurcation bill states that 114 seats will be given for the residual Jammu and Kashmir state, of which 24 seats are for PoK and remaining 90 seats will become the legislature for the Jammu and Kashmir. Thus, post delimitation, Jammu and Kashmir will get a full-fledged legislature under the Indian State. Through this bifurcation bill as many as 150 former state laws have been repealed and 120 central laws has been extended to the state.
Countries like Russia, China, France and US have come in support of India’s stance on Article 370. Pakistan occupied Kashmir is the only outstanding issue that India will engage in talks with Pakistan and with the focused efforts of the present government, other outstanding issues would also be resolved, hinting that PoK could also be a surprise resolution. However, India is now celebrating, said Ram Madhav.
— The author Ram Madhav is National General Secreatay of BJP...