Article 370: Caveat in SC against petition on revocation

New Delhi: A Kashmiri Pandit body on Tuesday filed a caveat in the Supreme Court against the petition of six retired military officers and bureaucrats who had challenged the decision to revoke Article 370 that gave special status to Jammu and Kashmir.

The Roots in Kashmir (RIK), which claims to represent the sentiments of the majority of the Kashmiri Pandit community, filed a caveat through advocate Bimal Roy Jad and sought that no order shall be passed on the petition challenging the revocation of Article 370 without hearing them.

The petition had been filed by six retired military officers and bureaucrats including Air Vice Marshal (Retd) Kapil Kak, Major General (Retd) Ashok Kumar Mehta, former IAS officers Hindal Haidar Tyabji, Amitabha Pande and Gopal Pillai, and former member of the Home Ministry’s group of interlocutors for J&K, Radha Kumar.

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They had said that the method of altering Article 370 by purporting to apply Article 367 with modifications to the state of Jammu and Kashmir is nothing but a “fraud” on the Constitution and sought quashing of the Presidential Order as well as the Jammu & Kashmir (Reorganisation) Act, 2019.

‘Roots in Kashmir’ has always demanded the abrogation of Articles 370 and 35A and said that that it believes that both these special provisions to a Muslim-majority state were being misused to turn Jammu and Kashmir into an Islamic state.

According to RIK’s coordinator, Munish Jalali, the organisation is now working with others to start a nationwide awareness campaign to highlight the ills of these two articles.

“These articles were not only an impediment in the return of Kashmiri Pandits, but also a hindrance in delivering justice to thousands of people who have been victims of terrorism,” the organisation said.

“The abrogation of Articles 370 and 35A will now help the minorities, women and disadvantaged communities to be treated as equals in the new dispensation and help Jammu and Kashmir become a part of India’s economic growth and prosperity.”

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