In an unprecedented move, the Government of India has announced the revoking of the contentious Article 370 from Jammu and Kashmir with immediate effect. The government has also announced that Jammu and Kashmir will no longer be a state and will be considered a Union Territory henceforth. While this move was being contemplated from a long time, it is being put into effect at present. The decision was announced by the Home Minister of India Amit Shah.
This means that Jammu and Kashmir will no longer hold special rights, and even the Article 35A issued by the President of India on 14 May 1954 would be scrapped. Article 370 gave special rights to the residents of Jammu and Kashmir pertaining to the following points:
- Employment under the State Government: Outsiders were not allowed to get employed in Jammu and Kashmir.
- Even scholarships in state-run educational institutions were not provided to outsiders.
- Acquisition of immovable property in the State was not allowed for outsiders so far.
- There were special rights pertaining to settlement in the State as well.
- Immovable property of a state subject/citizen was not allowed to be transferred to a non-state subject.
While there is huge uproar regarding this move in the Rajya Sabha, the repercussions of this decision are yet to be seen. As of now there if still no clarity if 35A has been scrapped or not. The impact this decision will have on Jammu and Kashmir, as well as the rest of the country, will gradually unfold in the days to come.
“This move will help us open IITs, IIMs and AIIMs like institutes in Jammu and Kashmir from now on,” said BJP MP Bhupender Yadav in the Rajya Sabha.