March 17, 2018

CMs of J&K, Bihar, Uttarakhand, Tamil Nadu call on PM Modi

13 August 2017, 12:30 | Taylor George

Mehbooba Mufti after meeting Prime Minister Narendra Modi

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Chief minister Mehbooba Mufti on Friday claimed that Prime Minister Narendra Modi had assured her that there would be no fiddling with the special status of the state.

The PIL said the state government, under the guise of Article 35A and Article 370, which grants special autonomous status to the state, has been discriminating against non- residents who are debarred from buying properties, getting a government job or voting in the local elections. The assurance given by the Prime Minister can not be taken seriously. "The Prime Minister gave 100% assurance on the agenda of alliance", J&K CM Mehbooba Mufti said on the BJP-PDP alliance after meeting with the Prime Minister.

The article empowers state's legislature to define "permanent residents" of the state and provide special rights and privileges to those permanent residents.

"It should not happen".

"It is a shield for the backward people of Jammu and Kashmir", he said. Since their Independence from Britain, the two countries have fought three wars, two exclusively over Kashmir.

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The BJP called the core group meeting to discuss the prevailing situation in Jammu and Kashmir, where opposition parties, separatists, traders, civil society members and lawyers have resented any move to abrogate Article 35-A.

Article 35A was added to the Constitution by a presidential order in 1954, it said.

Kashmir is witnessing a political storm following the Attorney-General's suggestion to the Supreme Court in July "to have a larger debate on Article 35A" while it is being challenged by an NGO. "Every Kashmiri will take to roads and there will be Valley-wide protests if the State or centre government tries to erode Article 35-A", KEA acting chairman Farooq Ahmad Dar said.

Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti has sought PM Modi's intervention to avoid the crisis. The memorandum also focuses on sensitizing the Kashmiri people about the grave dangers and consequences of the proposed abrogation by using service of Imams, Pujaris, Granthis, and priests across the State. "So the message that Jammu and Kashmir is the crown of India should be reiterated".

"However, we want that State's special status must go for its complete integration with India", he said. Senior BJP Leader Virendra Gupta, while speaking to PTI, said the time has come for Articles 35A and 370 to be struck down, as they promote a "separatist psyche" in the Valley.

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