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Article 370 Verdict: India Supreme Court upholds repeal of Kashmir’s special status

Introduction: Article 370 Verdict

  • Supreme Court declares the Cen­tre’s deci­sion to abro­gate Arti­cle 370 in Jam­mu and Kash­mir as con­sti­tu­tion­al­ly valid.
  • Chief Jus­tice DY Chan­dra­chud states that Arti­cle 370 was ini­tial­ly a tem­po­rary pro­vi­sion due to war-like con­di­tions in the state.

Key Points from the Verdict:

  • The five-judge Con­sti­tu­tion bench led by Chief Jus­tice DY Chan­dra­chud reserved its ver­dict after a 16-day hear­ing on Sep­tem­ber 5.
  • The court empha­sized that every deci­sion tak­en by the Union dur­ing Pres­i­den­tial Rule is not open to chal­lenge to pre­vent the admin­is­tra­tion of the state from com­ing to a stand­still.
  • Rejects the argu­ment that the Union can­not take actions of irre­versible con­se­quences in the State dur­ing Pres­i­den­tial Rule.
  • Val­i­dates the Pres­i­den­t’s order to scrap Jam­mu and Kash­mir’s spe­cial sta­tus as con­sti­tu­tion­al­ly valid.
  • States that Arti­cle 370 was not intend­ed to be a per­ma­nent pro­vi­sion, and when the Con­stituent Assem­bly of Jam­mu and Kash­mir ceased to exist, the spe­cial con­di­tion for which Arti­cle 370 was intro­duced ceased to exist.
  • Rejects the notion that the pow­er under Arti­cle 370(3) ceas­es to exist after the dis­so­lu­tion of the Jam­mu and Kash­mir Con­stituent Assem­bly, as it would lead to the freez­ing of the process of inte­gra­tion.
  • Clar­i­fies that the rec­om­men­da­tion of the Con­stituent Assem­bly of Jam­mu and Kash­mir was not bind­ing on the Pres­i­dent of India.
  • Directs the Elec­tion Com­mis­sion of India to con­duct elec­tions in Jam­mu and Kash­mir by Sep­tem­ber 30, 2024.
  • Stress­es the prompt restora­tion of Jam­mu and Kash­mir’s state­hood, direct­ing the Elec­tion Com­mis­sion to con­duct leg­isla­tive assem­bly elec­tions at the ear­li­est.

Quotes from the Judgment:

  • Chief Jus­tice Chan­dra­chud: “We direct that steps shall be tak­en so that elec­tions are held in Leg­isla­tive Assem­bly of J&K by Sep­tem­ber 30, 2024.”
  • Jus­tice Kaul: “The require­ment of Jam­mu and Kash­mir Con­stituent Assem­bly’s rec­om­men­da­tion in Arti­cle 370 can’t be read in a man­ner mak­ing larg­er inten­tion redun­dant.”
  • Jus­tice SK Kaul: “The pur­pose of Arti­cle 370 was to slow­ly bring Jam­mu and Kash­mir at par with oth­er Indi­an states.”

Reactions from Political Leaders:

  • Prime Min­is­ter Naren­dra Modi: Describes the Supreme Court’s deci­sion as the birth of a new Jam­mu and Kash­mir, rein­forc­ing uni­ty and integri­ty with Bharat.
  • Union Home Min­is­ter Amit Shah: Hails the deci­sion, stat­ing that the bonds of uni­ty have strength­ened.

PM Modi’s Assurance

  • PM Modi assures the peo­ple of Jam­mu, Kash­mir, and Ladakh that the gov­ern­ment is com­mit­ted to ful­fill­ing their dreams and extend­ing the ben­e­fits of progress to vul­ner­a­ble and mar­gin­al­ized sec­tions affect­ed by Arti­cle 370.

  • Views the ver­dict as a bea­con of hope, a promise of a brighter future, and a tes­ta­ment to col­lec­tive resolve to build a stronger, more unit­ed India.

Conclusion

  • The Supreme Court’s his­toric deci­sion upholds the con­sti­tu­tion­al­i­ty of the abro­ga­tion of Arti­cle 370, empha­siz­ing the need for prompt elec­tions in Jam­mu and Kash­mir and the restora­tion of state­hood. Polit­i­cal lead­ers, includ­ing PM Modi and Amit Shah, wel­come the ver­dict, see­ing it as a rein­force­ment of uni­ty and a promise for a brighter future for the region.

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