Statehood for JK: Why, What For?

The promise of the restoration of statehood to Jammu & Kashmir by none else than Home Minister Amit Shah in both the houses of the parliament in August last year has become a point of huge public debate after the announcement of a delimitation panel and a domicile law much before the restoration of statehood. The politicians of all shades and opinions, civil society groups and legal experts in their daily statements ask the central government to explain that if the condition is conducive for executing a delimitation initiative and a domicile law in Jammu & Kashmir, then why delay in restoring the statehood? Keeping promise of the restoration of statehood on suspension mode and announcing in haste crucial decisions on legislative and administrative matters concerning basic rights of the people of Jammu & Kashmir on land and jobs without the nod of the parliament members presently the only public representative in Jammu & Kashmir indicate that incumbent central government is not leaving any contentious public issue for either the elected representatives or the next popular government of Jammu & Kashmir to decide. Having already snatched the right to have government of their own will from the people of both Jammu & Kashmir and Ladhak union territories, the central government imposes decisions of it’s own will over the hapless populations of Jammu & Kashmir in isolation. Since the motive of restoration of statehood promised by the Union Home Minister on the floor of parliament, the highest law making body of the country, was to give the people of Jammu & Kashmir the right to take themselves the decisions of their constitutional, legal and administrative priorities through an elected government but ironically even the elected parliament members are not taken on board over the crucial matters concerning land and job rights of the people of Jammu & Kashmir.
The people of Jammu & Kashmir reserve the right to ask the central government that why they were promised statehood and what was its motive if Prime Minister and Home Minister had decided to impose decisions of their own whims and wishes on legislative matters concerning basic rights of the people particularly delimitation of assembly constituencies and domicile law for land and job rights over them without the consent of their elected representatives.
Ironically the incumbent central government has defined plans to impose crucial decisions like a domicile law for job rights in Jammu & Kashmir but it has left untouched the issue of same domicile law for Ladhak union territory, another part of the erstwhile Jammu & Kashmir state lending credence to speculations that article 371 may be extended to Ladhak another union territory on the pattern of north eastern states. Question can be asked why this huge discrimination in the execution of provocative laws in the two union territories which were part of the erstwhile Jammu & Kashmir state. Though huge backlash against the controversial clauses of the new domicile law forced the central to amend the new law under mounting public pressure but people in both Kashmir Valley and as well as Jammu division are anguished over replacement of the state subject law which was enforced in 1927 by the dogra rulers and remained in operation under Article 35 A for about 70 long years till October last year. Keeping in view the fact that the state subject law governed by the scrapped article 35 A is pending disposal before the supreme court of the court of the country, the Central Government should have not take a decision on land and job rights till a final verdict by the apex court or take over by a new popular government after restoration state hood. The people of Jammu & Kashmir reserve the right to ask the central government that why they were promised statehood and what was its motive if Prime Minister and Home Minister had decided to impose decisions of their own whims and wishes on legislative matters concerning basic rights of the people particularly delimitation of assembly constituencies and domicile law for land and job rights over them without the consent of their elected representatives.

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