Kashmir Turmoil: What is Article 370 that govt has proposed to revoke
Article 370: As fear and panic mounted in the state of Jammu and Kashmir, Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Monday moved the proposal to remove Article 370 in the Rajya Sabha amid much uproar.
Before the introduction of the bill, the Kashmir turmoil rocked the Rajya Sabha as Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad raised the current situation in Kashmir.
The Union government on Monday moved a resolution in the Rajya Sabha to revoke Article 370 amid uproarious protests from opposition benches. The resolution was moved by Union home minister Amit Shah in the backdrop of growing turmoil in Jammu and Kashmir.
Article 370 of the Constitution is a ‘temporary provision’ which promises to grant autonomous status to Jammu and Kashmir and limits Parliament’s powers to make laws for the state. Under Part XXI of the Constitution titled “Temporary, transitional and special provisions”, Article 370 is categorized as a “temporary provision with respect to the State of Jammu & Kashmir.”
Jammu and Kashmir will also be “reorganised,” said the Home Minister as talk builds of the state being trifurcated into three distinct areas – Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh.
The crucial Union Cabinet met at the official residence of Prime Minister in New Delhi on Monday morning. The meeting, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, was held at 7 Lok Kalyan Marg in New Delhi.
Since Article 370 (1) (d) of the Constitution was issued under Presidential Order, the President can make certain ‘exceptions and modifications’ to the Constitution for the benefit of ‘State subjects’ of Jammu and Kashmir.
Article 370: Things to know
- Article 370 is a ‘temporary provision’ granting Jammu and Kashmir special autonomous status. It allows the state to draft its own Constitution and restricts parliament’s legislative powers over the state.
- The article says that the provisions of Article 238, which was omitted from the Constitution in 1956 when Indian states were reorganized, shall not apply to the state of Jammu and Kashmir.
- It also confers powers such as the need of “concurrence of the state government” if the central government plans to make amendments to the concurrent list of subjects.
- Under this Article, the center can only declare an emergency in the state in case of war or external aggression; this rules out doing so for internal disturbances unless made specifically at the request of the state government.
- Article 370 was eventually drafted by Gopalaswami Ayyangar.
- Ayyangar was a minister without portfolio in the first Union Cabinet of India. He was also a former Diwan to Maharajah Hari Singh of Jammu and Kashmir.
- Article 370 is drafted in Amendment of the Constitution section, in Part XXI, under Temporary and Transitional Provisions.
- The government, therefore, needs approval from the state government for all laws, except those relating to defense, foreign affairs, finance, and communications. Also under Article 370 the parliament cannot increase or reduce the state’s borders
- As a result, Jammu and Kashmir residents live under a separate set of laws, including those related to citizenship, ownership of property, and fundamental rights, as compared to other Indians.