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‘Same People Complain about Emergency’: Punjab CM Slams BJP on Arrests of Mainstream Kashmir Leaders

Captain Amarinder Singh also condemned the manner in which the Narendra Modi government passed a resolution to abrogate articles 370 and 35-A in J&K that grants special status to the state

Ramlal Kondal | News18.com

Updated:August 6, 2019, 4:57 PM IST
‘Same People Complain about Emergency’: Punjab CM Slams BJP on Arrests of Mainstream Kashmir Leaders
File photo of Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh.

Chandigarh: Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Tuesday condemned the manner in which the Narendra Modi government passed a resolution to abrogate articles 370 and 35-A in Jammu and Kashmir that grants special status to the state.

“I am not for this business. The way it has been done. Had it been done constitutionally, it would have been fine,” the chief minister said, while talking to reporters at the Assembly here.

“This is within the competence of the government to do, provided it goes through the constitutional process which means it has to be passed by the Lok Sabha, by the Rajya Sabha and then ratified by a certain number of state assemblies. Once the ratification takes place, it becomes a law. But in this case, it was just pushed through without taking constitutional propriety in view.”

Regarding arrests of mainstream Kashmiri leaders, he said, “You should take people into confidence, you talk to the leadership, but simply making arrests is wrong. I am against it. These are the people who complain they were arrested during Emergency, now they are themselves doing this.”

Former Jammu and Kashmir chief ministers Mehbooba Mufti and Omar Abdullah, who were under house arrest since Sunday night, have been arrested, officials said on Monday.

People's Conference chairman and former BJP ally, Sajjad Lone, along with Imran Ansari was also taken into custody later on Monday evening. Some more arrests have been made, the officials said, without sharing details.

When asked about the comments of BJP leaders that revoking Article 370 would weed out terrorism, Singh said, “How does constitutional change bring about an end to terrorism?”

The chief minister also lashed out at the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) for backing the Centre in Parliament on the issue of passing a resolution on the matter, despite ideologically favouring a federal structure.

Referring to the 1973 Anandpur Sahib Resolution that was put forward by the SAD demanding more autonomy for Punjab, Singh accused the Akalis of backtracking from their established stand.

“I heard Bhunder’s (SAD Rajya Sabhba MP) speech. He totally supported the government. It is totally against the federal structure. In a crux, the Anandpur Resolution simply advocates more power to the states, more federal structure, and you (SAD) did a U-turn,” the CM said.

However, he ruled out any impact of the Kashmir episode on the Kartapur corridor that will allow Sikh pilgrims from India to visit the Gurdwara Darbar Sahib in Pakistan.

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| Edited by: Sohini Goswami
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