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Oppn Posed Tough Questions to Home Minister on Jammu & Kashmir in Parliament; Here’s What Shah Said

Home Minister Amit Shah replied to all the questions on Article 370 and bifurcation of Jammu and Kashmir into two Union Territories raised by Opposition MPs in Parliament.


Updated:August 6, 2019, 9:32 PM IST
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Oppn Posed Tough Questions to Home Minister on Jammu & Kashmir in Parliament; Here’s What Shah Said
Home Minister Amit Shah speaks at the Lok Sabha on Tuesday. (BJP Twitter)

New Delhi: As the Lok Sabha, on the last day of its extended session, passed the resolution on revoking Article 370 from Jammu and Kashmir along with the bill pertaining to geographical reorganisation of the erstwhile state, Home Minister Amit Shah faced tough questions from the Opposition. And, he replied to all of them.

Here are the top questions that leaders from Opposition parties posed at Shah:

By-passing legal procedures to pass the bill

Opposition leaders raised allegations in the House that Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) side-stepped legal procedures like getting due support of the state legislature in order to repeal Article 370.

To this, the home minister said the constituent assembly was dissolved at the time of the introduction of the bill. In such a case, it is the governor who needs to provide a green flag to Parliament, which, Shah said, the Centre had sought and received.

Special status not provided only by Article 370

On the Centre stripping Jammu and Kashmir off its special status, Opposition leaders said that special status to a state is not provided only by way of Article 370. There are other clauses and articles that help a state enjoy that status, thus, hinting at the fact that J&K could have been made into a union territory with its special status intact.

Shah said Article 370 was required to be repealed to bring about development in Jammu and Kashmir by way of investments and jobs. This could only be done if external agents were enabled.

Representatives of people put under house arrest, not taken into confidence

Since the time the bill was introduced in the Rajya Sabha, the Opposition parties have expressed their displeasure over the fact that local political leaders were put under house arrest and curfew was imposed on the entire state that about to witness structural changes. Several leaders, including Congress’ Ghulam Nabi Azad, called the procedure undemocratic.

In response to this, Shah said the imposition of curfew and house arrests were temporary and needed to ensure law and order in the state.

Where is Farooq Abdullah

The Opposition in the Lok Sabha on Tuesday questioned the absence of parliamentarian Farooq Abdullah and said the Centre had put him under house arrest, as well.

The home minister said the former J&K chief minister was not under lockdown and his absence in the Lok Sabha was his personal choice and that he can’t be brought to Parliament at gun-point.

On Jammu and Kashmir being declared a Union Territory

National Conference MPs in the Lok Sabha raised questions on the logic behind bifurcating, for the first time, a full-fledged state into two Union Territories.

Shah said the decision to turn Jammu and Kashmir into a Union Territory was temporary and as the situation in the Valley improved, further changes would be underway.

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