Kashmir Indepth

Article 35 A sacred and sacrosanct

Srinagar, Feb 19 : Ahead of hearing on petitions challenging Article 35A in Supreme Court, former minister and Peoples Conference senior leader Abdul Gani Vakil said that Article 35-A is an ‘article of trust’ and sacrosanct. Any tinkering will have serious repercussions, not just for the state, but the whole country.

“Article 370 and 35-A are sacred for us and Constitutional guarantees of our special status form the basis of our relationship with India. Any tinkering with the ‘article of trust’

will not be tolerated at any cost and PC is ready for any sacrifice to safeguard Article 35 A. The government of India must understand that any attempts to fiddle with Article 35 A will only create alienation, and push the youth to the wall which is not interests of the nation”, he added.

Reiterating Peoples Conference’s commitment to safeguard the state’s special status ‘from further erosion’, Vakil said “Peoples Conference is dedicated & committed to safeguard Article 35-A and Article 370 and will not hesitate from making any sacrifice to safeguard it from any further erosion.”

Accusing NC, Congress & PDP for being facilitators and co-conspirators in every single machination launched against the state’s special status, Vaki asked how these parties are now shedding crocodile tears so as to exploit sentiments of the people by projecting themselves as the protectors and saviors of Articles 35-A and 370.

“The extent of autonomy which was once enjoyed by State of J&K has been diluted over the years with the concurrence of NC, PDP & Congress-led state governments by making 45 amendments in J&K Constitution thus surrendering the majority of legislative powers of the State Legislature and the executive powers of the State Government to the Parliament and the Union Government respectively. NC, PDP & Congress even enacted a drama of coming together to safeguard the special status when their real motive was to protect the ‘rights’ of two dynasts. How can the destroyers of our special identity suddenly turn into protectors and bodyguards of Art. 35-A and Art. 370?”, Vakil added.

“Isn’t it a fact that the Congress government headed by Ghulam Mohammad Sadiq in 1965 made the most perilous assault on the State autonomy by amending the Constitution to do away with ‘Sadr-i-Riyasat’ and the ‘Prime Minister’ and designate them as ‘Governor’ and the ‘Chief Miniser’ respectively. Isn’t it a fact that State Government headed by Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah in 1975 amended Art 368 to add a clause which made it impossible for the State Legislature to reverse the amendments made in the State Constitution in 1965. Now the same parties are in alliance, hoodwinking people, exploiting their sentiments on Article 35-A” Vakil asked.

Vakil assured that if PC comes into power in the coming elections, they will expose these parties by publishing a detailed whitepaper for their active role in the erosion of Article 370 till now.

“They have been signatories in every single erosion, applying hundreds of provisions of Constitution of India to the state of J&K. We will come up with a factual, detailed whitepaper clearly exposing their devious role in the systematic dilution of the special status enjoyed by the state of J&K”, he added.

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