Article 370 not a temporary provision, endorses Indian SC

New Delhi, April 04, 2018 (PPI-OT): After the ruling by the High Court of occupied Kashmir, Indian Supreme Court has also endorsed that the Article 370 of the Indian Constitution, which gives special status to Jammu and Kashmir, is not a temporary provision. The Indian apex court gave the ruling while hearing an appeal filed by petitioner Kumari Vijayalakshmi Jha, against the Delhi High Court’s April 11, 2017 order dismissing the plea seeking a declaration that Article 370 is temporary in nature.

The Supreme Court said that in its earlier verdict of 2017 in the SARFESI case, it had been already held that Article 370 was “not a temporary provision”. “The issue concerned is covered by the judgment of this court in the 2017 SARFAESI matter, where we have held that despite the headnote of Article 370, it is not a temporary provision,” a bench of Justices A K Goel and R F Nariman said. During the hearing, Additional Solicitor General Tushar Mehta appearing for India said that the matter be heard after some time as similar matters were pending before the court and were to be listed shortly.

Senior advocate Rajeev Dhavan and advocate Shoeb Aalam appearing for Jammu and Kashmir clarified that other matters which were pending before the Supreme Court related to Article 35-A of the Constitution and not Article 370 as submitted by the ASG Tushar Mehta. Dhavan said those matters cannot be heard along with the present case, which only deals with Article 370. The bench then adjourned the matter for hearing by three weeks on the insistence of the ASG Mehta.

The petitioner, Kumari Vijayalakshmi Jha, had claimed before the Delhi High Court that Article 370 was a temporary provision that had lapsed with the dissolution of the Constituent Assembly of Jammu and Kashmir in 1957. However, the Indian Supreme Court while referring to its earlier order held that “Article 370 is not a temporary provision”.

It is worth mentioning here that the High Court of occupied Kashmir in October, 2015, while rebutting the Indian claim of Kashmir being part of India, had ruled that the J and K had never been part of India. “Article 370 of Indian constitution that deals with the status of Jammu and Kashmir is beyond abrogation, repeal or even amendment,” the High Court had said in its ruling. A division bench of Justice Hasnain Masoodi and Janak Raj Kotwal had ruled in a 60-page judgment that Article 370 had assumed place of permanence in the Constitution. “It is beyond amendment, repeal or abrogation, in as much as Constituent Assembly of the State (J and K) before its dissolution did not recommend its Amendment or repeal,” the bench ruled.

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