New Delhi, Feb 25: What is Article 35-A:
Article 35 A ,is a provision made under presidential order which gives the Jammu and Kashmir legislature a carte Blanche to decide who are all permanent residents of the state and facilitates them with special rights and privileges in public sector jobs , acquisition of property in the state, scholarships and other public aid and welfare.
From this aspect, A complete shutdown is being observed in Mandi area of Poonch on Monday in defense of Article 35-A.
In this regard, All the shops and other business establishments are closed while transport is also off the roads.The traders and members of religious bodies in Mandi had called for the shutdown in defense of Article 35-A.
Meanwhile, authorities have also imposed restrictions in Poonch today in view of apprehensions about law and order situation.
As the Supreme Court begins hearing a case on the validity of Article 35A of the Constitution, Senior Advocate and former Advocate General of Jammu and Kashmir, Jahangir Iqbal Ganai told media that the "petition is flawed as the President never amended the Constitution by this Article as it was a mere exception,"
Ganai further says that "Article 35A is not a part of the Indian Constitution, but part of the Constitution of India pertaining to Jammu and Kashmir."
The much-debated Article 35A gives a ‘special status’ to residents of Jammu and Kashmir apart from defining who the ‘permanent residents’ of the state are. The Supreme Court will be hearing a clutch of petitions challenging the provision.
"The very basis of the petition challenging 35A is not supported by law. They say that it's an amendment and the President cannot amend the Constitution of India. But we say that it is not an amendment as it's not a part of the Constitution of India but it's a part of the Indian Constitution that was for J&K. By applying the Constitutional provisions to the state of J&K, the Constitution itself gives power to the President to apply the provisions of the Constitution by exceptions and modifications. So 35A is an exception to the chapter pertaining to the fundamental rights," Ganai told to media.
However, the petition against Article 35A challenges the Constitutional validity of orders passed by the President, first limiting the powers of Parliament to make laws for Jammu and Kashmir and then allowing the provision on a permanent settlement.
“The President of India under the garb of a temporary provision i.e. Article 370 (1) cannot amend the Constitution by incorporating a new Article of permanent nature,” reads the petition.