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    Monday, August 6, 2018

    ECAS Politics: Repealing Article 370 - A Long and Tough Legal Process

    Article 370 of the Indian constitution grants certain special privileges to the state of Jammu and Kashmir. Such as Duration of the state's Assembly is six years, not five like the rest of India, They have a separate flag, Indian citizens cannot buy property in J&K, and The Indian Parliament has only limited reach in J&K. Only Defense, External Affairs, and a few other domains. Also, Repealing Article 370 is A Long and Tough Legal Process  

    Basically, the Article grants these special privileges only to Kashmir's "Permanent Residents".

    Technically Kashmir never fully merged with India in 1947. The only legal document that is in force today that deals with the relationship between the Republic of India and J&K state are the Article 370 of the Indian Constitution. Repealing it is only the first step in a very long, tough legal process that may or may not lead to J&K's full merger with India.

    It can broadly be divided into two steps. Abrogation of Article 370 and Full merger of J&K with India. The first step involves pushing through a constitutional amendment in the Indian Parliament with two-thirds majority support for the said amendment followed by this amendment being adopted by the J&K Constituent assembly as law. Do you see how impossible this first step itself is?

    The J&K Constituent Assembly is not the same as the state assembly. The last Constituent Assembly was in existence in 1951. Say the BJP Government recalls and reinstates a new Constituent Assembly. By putting the Constitutional Amendment in front of this Assembly, what is technically happening is, the Instrument of Accession of J&K into India is being called into question! By doing that you are actually hacking the very thing that is holding J&K in India. Our "brilliant" politicians don't understand this.

    If by some chance, this Constituent Assembly adopts this Constitutional Amendment, then we come to the next, near impossible task of initiating the full merger of J&K into India. How do we do that? By holding a plebiscite in Jammu and Kashmir to see if the locals do want to join the Indian Union or not. What if the result is not favorable to India? What then? Do you see how fraught with dangers this entire process is?

    If the current BJP government and the J&K government and people can come up with some innovative solution to get around this problem, then great! But the fact remains that our founding fathers made some very serious strategic mistakes with regards to Kashmir. It is up to the current generation of Indians to solve these issues. But we must approach this problem with patience and the soft touch of diplomacy. Any rash action will lead to disastrous consequences for both India and Kashmir. Thereby, 
    Repealing Article 370 is A Long and Tough Legal Process  
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    Item Reviewed: ECAS Politics: Repealing Article 370 - A Long and Tough Legal Process Rating: 5 Reviewed By: ECAS India
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