“Mr Abdullah, you want that India should defend Kashmir. You wish India should protect your borders, she should build roads in your area, she should supply you food grains, and Kashmir should get equal status as India, but you don’t want India and any citizen of India to have any rights in Kashmir and Government of India should have only limited powers. 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. I cannot betray the interests of my country.”
– Dr BR Ambedkar cited as saying in the book ‘Dr BR Ambedkar Framing Of Indian Constitution’ by Dr SN Biusi
To start with, Dr BR Ambedkar who is the founding father of our Constitution and the first Union Law Minister of India was absolutely shell shocked to hear the absurd proposal that no Indian would be allowed to settle in Jammu and Kashmir nor be allowed to buy any property there or apply for any job there under the garb of protecting people from Jammu and Kashmir! Not just this if any woman from J&K marries anyone outside the state she would lose all her rights and if she marries someone from Pakistan then she would lose no rights and the Pakistani men would gain all the rights! Nothing on earth can be more disgraceful than this and this we see Dr Ambedkar reflecting in his words also!
To be sure, Dr Ambedkar stoutly opposed granting the special status to Jammu and Kashmir. He also opposed Article 370 as he knew that it would be detrimental to our country’s national interests and separate flag, separate Constitution, separate citizenship, separate law would only encourage more secession and separatism and that is what has happened in last 72 years! We all have seen for ourselves how the entire nation bursted in joy and Indians living all across the globe also celebrated hugely the abrogation of Article 370 and Article 35A of the Constitution after the President gave his approval to the same! Union Home Minister Amit Shah who tabled the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Bill, 2019 and the statutory resolutions in Rajya Sabha around 11 am after the Union cabinet met at Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s residence at 9.30 am to grant the go-ahead said that, “Article 370 was a temporary provision…how long can a temporary provision be allowed to continue…After abrogation of Article 370, Jammu and Kashmir will truly become an integral part of India.” Saying Article 370 was at the root of terrorism, Amit Shah told the House that full state status will be restored to Jammu and Kashmir at an appropriate time when normalcy returns. He rightly said that the decision to do away with the special status of J&K and to bifurcate the state into two UTs was in the supreme national interest! No denying it!
As it turned out, Amit Shah rose to place four matters before the Rajya Sabha which are as follows:-
1. Constitution (Application to Jammu & Kashmir) Order, 2019 issued by President of India to supersede the 1954 order related to Article 370.
2. Resolution for the repeal of Article 370 of the Constitution of India.
3. Jammu & Kashmir (Reorganisation) Bill, 2019 by which Jammu and Kashmir which earlier was a state was now proposed to be converted to two Union Territories – Jammu and Kashmir with legislature and Ladakh without a legislature.
4. Jammu & Kashmir Reservation (Second Amendment) Bill, 2019 providing for 10 percent reservation for SC, ST and OBCs in J&K
Eminent jurist and senior Supreme Court advocate Mohan Parasaran who is also the former Solicitor General of India candidly says that, “From a personal point of view, the GoI needs to be congratulated for uniting the country, as there was always a feeling that Jammu and Kashmir was truly not part of India, but part of the nation for historical purposes. This was exploited by politicians, and led to communal forces gaining control, post-Independence, and terrorism taking a lead role. Keeping aside the legal issues, the GoI’s intention has to be appreciated as one which is to bolster the sovereignty and integrity of the country.”
It is for the first time that we saw even many opposition parties supporting the Centre’s move. Even though Congress party opposed it but many of its tall leaders openly hailed it and former Union Law Minister Ashwani Kumar even termed it as a daring move! No doubt, the scrapping of Presidential proclamation of 1954 by the Constitution (Application to Jammu and Kashmir) Order, 2019 which was passed on August 5 in concurrence with the Government of the State of Jammu and Kashmir with immediate effect is the most boldest step by any government in India since independence! This is a more bolder step than even surgical strikes of 2016 or the Balakot air strikes! This alone explains that why even Sushma Swaraj who was the former Union External Affairs Minister and who expired just recently before dying left a most memorable tweet in which she expressed her utmost happiness in the following words, “Thank you Prime Minister. Thank you very much. I was waiting to see this day in my lifetime.”
Finally and most importantly, the integration of Jammu and Kashmir with India is now full and final! No country has no business to comment on our internal affairs! UK should mind its own business and set its own house in order before pointing fingers at India as rightly advised by Naomi Canton who herself a British citizen very rightly said that, “India, to its credit, has stayed neutral on Brexit, saying it is a sovereign matter, even indicating a favourable post-Brexit trade deal. Yet several British MPs have felt the right to publicise their views on Kashmir. Would British people expect Indian MPs to write to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the UN asking both to intervene in Brexit? Will New York Times or Guardian demand that non-Muslims should not be allowed to settle in these locations in Detroit or Bradford where there is a majority of Muslim inhabitants? If the editors find such an idea absurd, why are they backing it in India? It is an inconvenient truth that those British MPs who say that “the removal of Artticle 370 betrays the trust of the people of Jammu and Kashmir” are the same people who wish to ignore the results of the 2016 EU referendum. Jammu and Kashmir will become two Union Territories on October 31 on exactly the same day the UK will leave the EU.”
No doubt, China should also first itself vacate the territory of Jammu and Kashmir illegally ceded by Pakistan to it and not lecture us! Similarly Pakistan should also vacate the area of Jammu and Kashmir which is in its illegal occupation! It is heartening to note that the UN also refused to intervene in between when Pakistan pleaded before it! Article 370 and Article 35A only were serving as weapons to further the dangerous, dubious and deplorable agenda of Pakistan to alienate the people of Jammu and Kashmir from the rest of India and this alone explains why it fumed and fulminated most when it was scrapped and so it is absolutely right that both these articles have been virtually dumped now!
It gives a great deal of satisfaction to note that the integration of Jammu and Kashmir with India is now full and final! The whole world has to come to terms with this now! US has already accepted this and places India on a developed nation club akin to that of China! Can anyone deny this?
Also, now Jammu and Ladakh will also develop more as more funds will be allotted for their development and it is not just Kashmir alone which will corner away all the major part of the package meant for the entire state! This is truly commendable! All Indians must bury their petty differences and unite together in supporting Centre for taking such a bold and beautiful initiative that even leaders from opposition parties cutting across party lines have chosen to endorse it differing even from their own party line! Ajit Pawar who is nephew of Sharad Pawar of NCP has also openly supported it.
Many regional parties like AAP, BSP, TDP, BJD and many others have also supported it openly! Mukul Rohatgi who is former Attorney General of India and an eminent and senior Supreme Court lawyer was quite outspoken in saying that, “If the President can issue order under Article 370 he can also withdraw it by the same route!” Very rightly so! Pakistan has no business in meddling in India’s internal affairs and Imran Khan himself has candidly confessed that the whole world is standing with India on such a sensitive issue! This is because India’s stand is justified and India has not done anything which can attract opprobrium!