Article 370 was neither a prerequisite to the integration nor a constitutional necessity

From the administrative view point, a tripartite division should have been more viable for three regions -- Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh -- which are mutually exclusive in aspects of language, religion, geography and situation. The present division seems motivated by the fear of creating and managing a separate hostile province of Kashmir valley

Dr SB MisraDr SB Misra   8 Aug 2019 8:03 AM GMT

Article 370 was neither a prerequisite to the integration nor a constitutional necessity

'Kashmiriyat (unique identity of Kashmir), insaniyat (humanity) and jamhuriyat (democracy) were the romantic ideals of the poet in Atal Bihari Vajpayee. Kashmiriyat got banished along with Kashmiri pandits, leaving behind a bereft Kashmir preserving which is a constant challenge being now ably faced by the Modi government.

Doing away of Article 370 by the Modi government may lead Indians to believe that Kashmir is now truly an integral part of them. It is ironical that Kashmir, despite being unconditionally merged into the Indian Union by Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel and protected by soldiers coming from various Indian states, didn't allow Indians to buy a patch of land there.

Kashmir had witnessed the forced exodus of Kashmiri pandits, its inhabitants from generations, to save their lives and their sisters' and daughters' dignity. Indian pilgrims visiting the holy shrines of Vaishno Devi and Amarnath in Kashmir did so with fear in their hearts. If a Kashmiri girl married a non-Kashmiri boy, she had to forfeit her right to ancestral property. Indian government was made to spend millions of rupees with Indians sacrificing innumerable lives to protect Kashmir and still its integration with the country seemed a distant dream.

All this could have been avoided had we followed the then Home Minister Patel. In a democracy,sovereignty lies with people whereas in monarchy, the king is the owner of the land. So, when Karan Singh's father Raja Hari Singh had agreed unconditionally to integrate his princely state with the Indian Union, he had transferred his ownership of the land to India. Problem arose because Sheikh Abdullah wanted an independent country status for Kashmir and so ably helped by Nehru in the form of Article 370, he left Kashmir in an impasse.

The step of Modi government is a true homage to Dr Shyama Prasad Mukherjee who had sacrificed his life to make Kashmir an integral part of India. Thus ends an ambiguous era of a leader, flag and constitution.

Article 370 was neither a prerequisite to the integration nor a constitutional necessity. Integration occurred in 1947 and our Constitution came to force in 1950 -- four years before Article 370 came into force in 1954 due to Nehru and Sheikh Abdullah.

Patel did not give in to any condition for the integration of any principality therefore Kashmir did not merit any special status or provision of any article for the purpose. So called secularists need not cry foul over revoking of Article 370 which went off without as much a whimper.Although the Modi government was not even in majority in Rajya Sabha, opposition provided the double votes towards reconstitution of Kashmir.

Reconstitution of the state of Jammu and Kashmir is crucial which now provides for two union territories instead. From the administrative view point, a tripartite division should have been more viable for the three regions which are mutually exclusive in aspects of language, religion, geography and situation. The present division seems motivated by the fear of creating and managing a separate hostile province of Kashmir valley. The bill was passed in the Lok Sabha without much hindrance. The President has sealed the deal. The Modi government will have one mandate fulfilled and Ladakh will thrive under focus of its new status.

Many may question the rationale behind such massive scale preparations, flooding of the Army, curtailing of the communication, cancelling Amarnath Yatra and putting people to inconvenience in general. This shows the resolve of Modi government to face every consequence, irrespective the source — be it Pakistan,China or even unsocial elements from Kashmir. The Modi government has braced itself for facing every repercussion.

Mehbooba Mufti and Omar Abdullah spoke and acted seditiously and were therefore detained and subsequently arrested. India has already paid heavily for the mischief of Omar's grandfather and Farooq's father, Sheikh Abdullah. One also may not be able to forget Mehbooba Mufti's father Mufti Mohammed Syed's selfish act of betraying the country wherein he released dreaded terrorists for the release of his daughter Rubaiyya.

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