Article 370 that confers special status to Jammu and Kashmir has been proposed to be removed said Home Minister Amit Shah in Parliament this morning. As tension has been increasing in Jammu and Kashmir, Amit Shah proposed to remove Article 370 and also decided to bifurcate the state into two Union territories.
As per announcement Jammu and Kashmir will be now “reorganized” and Ladakh will be a Union Territory without an assembly and Jammu, and Kashmir will be a Union Territory with an assembly. However, the people of Ladakh have been demanding since long for the status of Union Territory.
The decision to scrap Article 370 was marked by a mixed response from political parties. All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK), Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), Biju Janata Dal (BJD), Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) welcomed the move while Janata Dal (United) and NDA constituents staged a walkout.
There was a massive uproar in the Upper House with opposition MPs protesting in the Well of the House immediately after the announcement. PM Modi held a crucial Cabinet meeting at his 7, Lok Kalyan Marg residence before the announcement was officially made.
Article 370 had been a controversial article that deals with special powers conferred upon the state of Jammu & Kashmir. It gives autonomous state power hence enabling them to make its own Constitution.
However, former chief minister of Jammu and Kashmir and National Conference (NC) leader Omar Abdullah has deemed the govt’s move of removing Article 370 as a betrayal of trust of the people of the Valley, a move which will have ‘far-reaching and dangerous’ consequences.
Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) leader Mehbooba Mufti has called the decision to scrap Article 370 as “the darkest day in Indian democracy”.