Tag Archives: article 370

THE TRUTH ABOUT ARTICLE 370

Politicians have been talking endlessly about Article 370, but many Indians still do not understand what it practically means.

It was drafted by Gopalaswami Ayyangar, Minister without portfolio in the first Union Cabinet of Nehru who felt that JK was not yet ripe for integration. Sardar Patel was so livid with the provisions of Article 370 that he had resigned on this issue.

WHAT DOES ARTICLE 370 IMPLY?
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The state’s residents live under a separate set of laws, including those related to citizenship, ownership of property, and fundamental rights, as compared to other Indians

Unlike other State legislative Assemblies, J&K legislature has a six-year term.

Jammu & Kashmir has two flags; a separate State flag along with the National Flag.

Insulting of national symbols is not cognizable offence in Jammu & Kashmir.

Most of the laws except defence, foreign affairs, finance and communication, passed by Indian Parliament need to be approved by the State Government before they are made applicable in the State.

The citizens of J&K are governed by State-specific laws which come under the Constitution of Jammu and Kashmir, instead of those for the rest of India.

Under Article 370 the Indian Parliament cannot increase or reduce the borders of the State.

The Supreme Court has no jurisdiction in the State of Jammu & Kashmir.

The residents of J&K enjoy dual citizenship, but they could loose the J&K citizenship if they marry residents of other States.

If a woman marries a man in other Indian States, she loses her citizenship. Whereas if any woman marries a Pakistani, she will be entitled to have a citizenship of Jammu & Kashmir.

The Article also gives Pakistan’s citizens entitlement to Indian citizenship, if he marries a Kashmiri girl.

Majority of Indian laws including RTE, RTI and the writ of agencies like CBI, CAG are not applicable in J&K.

No outsider can purchase land in the State.

The Centre has no power to declare financial emergency under Article 360 in the State. It can declare emergency in the state only in case of war or external aggression.

This is what Ambedkar said about Article 370: “‘”You wish India should protect your borders, she should build roads in your area, she should supply you foodgrains, and Kashmir should get equal status as India. But Government of India should have only limited powers and Indian people should have no rights in Kashmir. To give consent to this proposal, would be a treacherous thing against the interests of India and I, as the Law Minister of India, will never do it.”

SO LET’S TAKE A POLL: DO YOU THINK ARTICLE 370 SHOULD BE REMOVED?

Promises BJP must keep

Source: Dialypioneer.com
OPED | Wednesday, March 25, 2009
Francois Gautier

Sending a clear message to divisive forces, the BJP must come out with a ‘nation first’ agenda of governance and fulfil the promises it has made to the masses

The curse of Hindus has always been disunity and betraying each other to the enemy. Today we see this trend again in the BJP where sometimes the highest party office-bearers can’t even say hello to each other. As far as one can remember, the BJP had three pillars: Former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, Mr LK Advani and Mr Murli Manohar Joshi.

Mr Vajpayee is no longer able to lead an active life due to health concerns and thus Mr Advani and Mr Joshi, who was president of the BJP in the early-1990s and had hoisted the Indian Tricolour in Srinagar at a time when no other leader gave a damn about Jammu & Kashmir, are two pillars of the party today. Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi has risen to the stature of a national-level leader, not only because he is an ironman but also because he has made his State a model of economic efficiency.

The BJP should make it known that it will really build the Ram Mandir, protect temples, stop Christian conversions, honour India’s gurus and impose some guidelines on media, which have a pre-conceived notion about Pope and Islam but always see Hindu godmen and sadhvis through the eyes of ‘secularism’.

On the external affairs side, the BJP should reaffirm its commitment to keep Arunachal Pradesh, stand-up to China’s bullying, and support Tibet to counteract Beijing, which is propping up Maoist Nepal and covertly using Burma as a military base.

The party should also make it clear that it will keep Jammu & Kashmir with India, hang terrorists (and not translate 11,000 indictment pages into Urdu for terrorist Ajmal Amir Kasab), punish Pakistan by launching surgical strikes next time it attacks India through a proxy war and keep the United States at bay as long as America supports and provides arms and ammunition to Pakistan.

But you would say: What about the NDA? The BJP should not bother about its allies who are anyway jumping the ship as they think the Congress will win the election. If Mr Advani stands true to the aspirations of Hindu voters, the BJP can come to power on its own at the Centre and thus be able to implement the changes which India so urgently needs: Adopt a Uniform Civil Code, repeal Article 370, reform the judiciary, and switch over to a Parliamentary system of governance.

The BJP should reiterate that it considers all Indians equal and that it is always attentive to the demands of the Muslim community.

Unfortunately, the media always feels closer to the Congress and flaunts this proximity blatantly. It is gleeful every time the BJP is in trouble. For instance, the media and the Congress have been much more severe with Mr Varun Gandhi than Kasab (the former didn’t say anything provocative while the latter went on a shooting spree).

As for the West’s opinion, French Ambassador Jérome Bonnafont, an otherwise courteous diplomat, summed it up very well when he said: “The RSS and the BJP are dangerous fascists and Muslims in India are persecuted, not having the same opportunities as Hindus.” He also genuinely feels that the burning of Hindus in the Sabarmati Express never happened, but that “the anti-Muslims riots in Gujarat were a crime against humanity”.

As Indians worship their country as the ‘mother’, the BJP should reintroduce the notion of ‘Mother India’ in its election manifesto. If US President Barack Obama can be sworn in on the Bible, then all future Indian Prime Ministers can take the oath of office on the Bhagavad Gita. Those who are Christians can use the Bible and the Muslims the Quran. That should satisfy everybody.

The writer is a senior French journalist who lives in India.