Supreme Court Delays Hearing Against Article 35A Granting Special Status To J&K By 3 Months

| October 30 , 2017 , 18:11 IST

The Supreme Court on Monday delayed the hearing of a petition challenging the Article 35A of the Constitution that grants special rights and privileges to the residents of Jammu and Kashmir by a period of three months.  

Article 35A had been added to the Indian Constitution in 1954 by a Presidential Order empowering the state's legislature to frame laws independently without attracting challenges comparing the Right to Equality of people in other states or other rights outlined by the Constitution.

The petition against Article 35A was filed by a Delhi-based NGO 'We The Citizens' which called for the repeal of the state-specific law.

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During a rally on the occasion of Dussehra earlier this month, the RSS Prant Pracharak Rupesh Kumar had termed the Article 35A unconstitutional, saying that it violates the basic character of the Indian Constitution which guarantees equality to all citizens of India, irrespective of caste, creed or religion.

Meanwhile, Kashmiri separatist leaders have warned of widespread protests if the Supreme Court rules against Article 35A, alleging that attempts to alter Article 35A is a conspiracy against Jammu and Kashmir.

Separatist leaders Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Mohammad Yasin Malik issued a joint statement in Srinagar, urging the public to “launch a mass agitation if the Supreme Court delivered a verdict against the interests and aspirations of the people of the state”.

Hurriyat leaders added, “Any move to tinker with a state subject law will create a Palestine-like situation.”