Omar Abdullah on Article 35A: Outsiders will take away jobs, scholarships if this law is repealed

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New Delhi | Published: August 14, 2017 1:39:33 PM

Omar Abdullah on Monday raised fears that repealing Article 35(A) take away jobs and scholarship of children of the state

Article 35A, Mehbooba Mufti meets PM Modi, Mufti, Omar Abdullah, immaterial, india newsFormer Jammu and Kashmir CM Omar Abdullah. (PTI)

Amid reports of Centre’s alleged proposal to scrap Article 35(A) of the Constitution, National Conference (NC) leader and former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah on Monday raised fears that it would take away jobs and scholarships of children in the state. “Provisions which are stated under article 35(A) were initiated by Raja Hari Singh. If this is scrapped by the Supreme Court, it will end state subject laws. People from other states will gain access to buy property in the region, avail educational scholarships for their children, relief material, and bag government jobs; the four main things that Raja Hari Singh protected us from,” Abdullah said while addressing a gathering in Jammu.

Abdullah also warned, “If this law is repealed, a day will come when you won’t find any anyone in government office able to understand your language…Don’t fall for their (BJP-PDP) propaganda. Don’t think that Jammu will benefit if Article 35(A) is repealed.”

Article 35(A) of the Constitution empowers the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly to define the state’s permanent residents and their privileges. It was inserted into the Constitution of India through a presidential order in 1954, to guarantee that the Maharaja’s ban on outsiders would remain.

Abdullah alleged ruling BJP-PDP coalition has hatched a conspiracy to remove the law. Abdullah also claimed that the BJP has constantly batted for the removal of Article 35(A), and tried to suppress any opposition arising against the same. “The BJP has been on our case ever since we spoke of Article 35(A). We have never encouraged bloodshed, but we refuse to fall prey to their conspiracy. Nobody should be carried away in their propaganda,” ANI quoted him as saying.

“Surprisingly, the BJP made an issue of 35(A) as a case of Jammu versus Kashmir. They say it will benefit Kashmir but adversely affect Jammu. Nobody is going to benefit from the removal of 35(A),” added Abdullah. Attacking BJP’s proposed removal of Article 370 of the Constitution, Omar said, “The BJP said it would scrap Article 370 but realised it isn’t possible through Parliament. Therefore, they approached the Court and asked others to fight the case on their behalf.”

Abdullah also said that Hurriyat, which does not believe in the Constitution of India, has no business to comment on 35(A).

Article 370 of the Indian Constitution grants special autonomous status to the state of Jammu and Kashmir.

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