New Delhi: This week could witness heightened tensions in Jammu and Kashmir as the Supreme Court might take up for hearing petitions challenging Article 35A of the Constitution which gives special status to the state.
In the background of the Pulwama attack and escalation of tensions between India and Pakistan, the hearing acquires increasing significance. The security forces are taking no chances. Separatists leaders are rounded-up and raids are being carried on in the valley. The leaders of Jamaat-e-islami and other clerics are those arrested from across Kashmir.
The crackdown follows after Yasin Malik, the chairman of Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front, was arrested yesterday. Earlier, the Central Government had scrapped security cover for the Hurriyat leaders.
Meanwhile, 100 companies of paramilitary forces have been deployed to contain any untoward incidents in the state when Supreme Court takes up the petition for hearing.
Incidentally, the Defence Minister, Nirmala Sitaraman will be meeting 44 military attaches who are currently stationed in Indian embassies across the world to chalk out a plan of action after Pulwama attack. Chiefs of the three wings of Indian military will be attending the meeting along with the Minister.
Currently, there are five petitions pending before the apex court regarding Article 35A. The first petition was filed by ‘We the Citizens’, a Delhi-based NGO in 2014. Supreme Court have listed the petitions on the hearing list for this week.
Article 35 A was included in the Constitution to give special rights and privileges to Jammu and Kashmir in 1954. The article bars people from other states from buying property and starting business in Kashmir. Also, Kashmiri women who marry someone outside the State will lose her right to acquire property and her children denied permanent residence certificate.