What is Article 370?


What is Article 370?

Article 370 of the Indian Constitution is a ‘temporary provision’ which grants special autonomous status to Jammu & Kashmir.

Under Part XXI of the Constitution of India, which deals with “Temporary, Transitional and Special provisions”, the state of Jammu & Kashmir has been accorded special status under Article 370.

All the provisions of the Constitution which are applicable to other states are not applicable to J&K.

For example, till 1965, J&K had a Sadr-e-Riyasat for governor and prime minister in place of chief minister.

2) History of Article 370

The provision was drafted in 1947 by Sheikh Abdullah, who had by then been appointed prime minister of Jammu & Kashmir by Maharaja Hari Singh and Jawahar Lal Nehru.

Sheikh Abdullah had argued that Article 370 should not be placed under temporary provisions of the Constitution. He wanted ‘iron clad autonomy’ for the state, which Centre didn’t comply with.

3) Provisions of Article 370

According to this article, except for defence, foreign affairs, finance and communications, Parliament needs the state government’s concurrence for applying all other laws.

Thus 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.

As a result of this provision, Indian citizens from other states cannot purchase land or property in Jammu & Kashmir. Under Article 370, 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.

The Union government can therefore not declare emergency on grounds of internal disturbance or imminent danger unless it is made at the request or with the concurrence of the state government.

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One Response

  1. Abdullahs’ ‘secularism’ will destroy India

    But the political situation in Kashmir Valley has changed to an extent in the aftermath of the developments which unfolded on and after May 16, including the elevation of Narendra Modi to the position of Prime Minister and virtual political extinction of the National Conference and the Congress in Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh. The people of Kashmir Valley have realised that the time for the ruling coalition in the State and at the Centre is up and it would be only politically prudent for them to adopt a soft approach towards the BJP. In fact, a number of educated and other Muslims in the Valley have already started coming forward to support the BJP and the Government of Narendra Modi.

    All this should serve to indicate that the situation in Jammu & Kashmir is changing and at an appreciable pace and that it would not be surprising if the BJP achieves its Mission 44+. If the BJP could increase its tally from two in 1984 to 282 in 2014, why can’t it achieve its stated goal, particularly at a time when the democratic and impartial BJP is in the driver’s seat in New Delhi and many regional satraps are trying to cultivate the BJP Government? Nothing is impossible considering the unfolding developments and the fact that many Muslims voted for the BJP, not only in Gujarat but also in UP, Bihar, MP, Delhi, Rajasthan, Jammu, Ladakh and so on. In sum, it can be said that Jammu & Kashmir, like Haryana, Delhi and Maharashtra, is on the top of the BJP’s political agenda and that the positive attitude of the national and local BJP leadership would surely induce many Kashmiri Muslims to join the BJP or support it in the upcoming Assembly election in the State.

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