Article 370: Jammu and Kashmir based parties hit out at the Centre, saying the action exposes “hollow claims” about normalcy in the former state.
Srinagar: On the fourth anniversary of the abrogation of Article 370, Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister and People’s Democratic Party Chief Mehbooba Mufti today said she has been put under house arrest along with other senior leaders of her party. Her party members were “illegally detained” in police stations after a midnight crackdown, she alleged.
Farooq Abdullah-led Jammu & Kashmir National Conference also tweeted saying their office has been sealed.
“I’ve been put under house arrest along with other senior PDP leaders today. This comes after a midnight crackdown where scores of my party men are illegally detained in police stations. GOIs false claims about normalcy to the SC stands exposed by theirs actions driven by paranoia,” Ms Mufti tweeted, along with visuals of the locked gate of her house.
She said on one hand, giant hoardings calling upon Kashmiris to “celebrate” the abrogation of Article 370 have been put up across Srinagar, “brute force is being used to choke the actual sentiment of the people”.
“Hope the Hon’ble SC takes cognisance of these developments at a time when Article 370 has come up for hearing,” the former chief minister said in another tweet.
National Conference said no one is being allowed in or out of their office. Both parties hit out at the Centre, saying the action exposes “hollow claims” about normalcy in the former state.
“True to form and in keeping with the clampdown on mainstream democratic activities organised by parties opposed to 5th Aug 2019, the JKNC office has been sealed by the police. No one is being allowed in or out of the office.
These steps betray the nervousness of the administration & render hollow their claims regarding great improvements in the last 4 years,” Jammu & Kashmir National Conference tweeted.
Meanwhile, the Supreme Court on Thursday asked the Centre if there is no mechanism to abrogate Article 370 even when the people of Jammu and Kashmir want it. If the now repealed provision can’t be touched, will it not amount to creating a “new category” beyond the basic structure of the Constitution, the court said.
A five-judge constitution bench headed by Chief Justice DY Chandrachud wanted to know how the provision could be revoked in the absence of a constituent assembly. The hearing in the matter remained inclusive and will resume on August 8.
The top court had earlier asked as to how can a provision (Article 370), which was specifically mentioned as a temporary provision in the Constitution, become permanent after tenure of the Jammu and Kashmir constituent assembly came to an end in 1957.
Several petitions challenging abrogation of the provisions of Article 370 and the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Act, 2019, which split the erstwhile state into two union territories – Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh- were referred to a Constitution bench in 2019.