Article 370 of the Indian Constitution provided special rights to the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir. It gave most of the power to the government of this state. Centre was left with limited power over J&K. Article 370 has recently been scrapped making it a historic event that is expected to change the face of the state for good. This move has received mixed reactions from political parties and the general public though it has largely been appreciated.
Long and Short Essay on Article 370 of the Indian Constitution
Essay on Article 370: Enforcement (250 Words)
Article 370 of the Indian Constitution was drafted in Part XXI of the Constitution: Temporary, Transitional and Special Provisions. However, soon after it came to be known as a permanent feature of the Indian Constitution. It has remained in effect in J&K for decades.
The Origin of Article 370 of the Indian Constitution
Article 370 was drafted by Sheikh Abdullah in the year 1947. Abdullah had been appointed as the Prime Minister of Jammu and Kashmir by Pundit Jawahar Lal Nehru and Maharaja Hari Singh of Kashmir.
Abdullah wanted complete autonomy for J&K and demanded that Article 370 must not remain a temporary provision. However, the Centre deemed this demand unreasonable and did not approve of it.
Special Status Given to Jammu and Kashmir
As Article 370 came into being, the Constituent Assembly of Jammu and Kashmir gained special power wherein it got the right to recommend the articles of the constitution that should be enforced on the state. It even got the power to annul Article 370 altogether.
Article 35 A and Article 370 together stated that a different set of laws apply for the residents of the state of J&K. The Indian Parliament could only exercise laws related to finance, defense, communications, and foreign affairs in the state.
It required the approval of the state government for applying all the other laws. The residents of J&K enjoyed completely different laws when it came to ownership of property, laws related to citizenship and fundamental rights.
As per the laws enforced by the state, the Indian citizens from other parts of the country were denied the right to purchase property in Jammu and Kashmir.
The residents of J&K fear that the scrapping of Article 370 may hamper their local business and thus be a threat to their livelihood. Adapting to the changes that are likely to follow this big decision also seems to be a cause of concern for the residents of J&K. Their concerns are genuine. We hope the condition of the place improves henceforth.
Essay on Article 370: Advantages and Disadvantages (400 words)
Article 370 of the Indian Constitution that gave special power to the state of Jammu and Kashmir was annulled on 5th August 2019. The decision taken by the Centre has been appreciated by several political parties, leaders, celebrities, and the majority of the general public. However, many others have criticized it outright. Article 370 had few advantages and several disadvantages.
Advantages of Article 370 of the Indian Constitution
Here is a look at the advantages of Article 370:
1) Article 370 is advantageous for the citizens of J&K. The state gives priority to the interest of its local citizens. There is less competition in the state and greater opportunities for its citizens.
2) J&K boasts of its local handicraft items. The government of this state has kept its culture and local businesses alive. It has always encouraged local businesses over foreign brands.
This is the reason why several local brands are running in the state. This means more work, greater growth opportunities and good income for the locals.
Disadvantages of Article 370 of the Indian Constitution
Here is a look at the disadvantages of Article 370:
1) The state of J&K hasn’t developed as much as the other parts of the country. This is particularly true when we look at the medical facilities here. The condition of the hospitals and healthcare centers in the state are not that good.
2) The law and order in J&K are weak because the center is not allowed to intervene. This has given rise to terrorism in the state. Terrorism is a major concern here and nothing much is being done to fight it.
3) Corruption in the state is high due to its alienation from the center. There is no check on the government of J&K. It makes its own laws and works as per its convenience.
4) Article 370 prevented the implementation of the Right to Education in the state. This is why students were forced to move to other states.
5) Outsiders cannot establish a business in J&K. Professionals and industrialists are not allowed to settle here. This is a major hindrance to the growth and development of the state.
6) This provision is anti-women in nature. It has led to extreme gender bias in the state.
The disadvantages of Article 370 of the Indian Constitution clearly outweigh its advantages. The atmosphere of tension in the state is clear evidence of the same. The scrapping of Article 370 seems like a ray of hope for the state that has been gripped by terrorism for long. We hope it sees better times ahead.
Long Essay on Article 370 (500 words)
Article 370 is a temporary provision in the Constitution of India. It provides special autonomous status to the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir.
The provisions of the Indian Constitution that are applicable to other states of India are not applicable to J&K.
The article was adopted in November 1956 and was enforced in the state in January 1957 by Sheikh Abdullah.
Special Provisions in Jammu and Kashmir as per Article 370
Some special provisions were made in Jammu and Kashmir as Article 370 came into force in the state. These include:
- J&K acquired a different national flag.
- Insulting the national flag and national symbols are considered a crime in India. It is a punishable offense. But this rule did not apply in J&K.
- The highest court orders in India did not apply to J&K.
- Jammu and Kashmir citizens enjoyed dual citizenship.
- Women in Kashmir had to abide by the Sharia law.
- The tenure of the Assembly of J&K was 6 years, unlike other Indian states in which the Assembly tenure is 5 years.
- RTI, RTE, and CAG were not applicable in Kashmir.
- The J&K citizenship of a woman who married a person from another Indian state ended. On the other hand, if a woman from the state married someone from Pakistan, he acquired J&K citizenship.
- If a Pakistani married a Kashmiri girl, he acquired Indian citizenship.
- Article 370 did not allow people from other states to purchase property in J&K.
- The minority group in Kashmir that consists of Hindus and Sikhs did not get a 16% reservation.
Changes after the Revocation of Article 370
Now that Article 370 has been revoked, Jammu and Kashmir will no longer enjoy the autonomous status. All the special powers that came with this article have been annulled. Here are some of the other changes that are being brought about:
- All the residents of J&K shall be entitled to single citizenship only.
- Article 360 that is enforced during a financial emergency is now applicable in J&K.
- People from other states shall be able to purchase property in J&K.
- The duration of the Legislative Assembly has been changed to 5 years.
- RTI will be applicable to J&K.
- Minorities will be eligible for a 16% reservation.
- Children will benefit from the Right to Education.
- Directive Principle of State Policy shall be applicable.
- J&K will not have a separate flag.
The Atmosphere in J&K as Article 370 Revoked
J&K’s prominent leaders, Omar Abdullah, Sajjad Lone, and Mehbooba Mufti were under house arrest as the bill for the abolition of Article 370 was passed in the Rajya Sabha.
Internet and mobile services in Kashmir’s Srinagar district were suspended and a ban imposed on all public gatherings.
With so many changes underway after the revocation of Article 370, it seems like J&K will finally experience peace and prosperity. This is just the first step towards the betterment of the state.
There are miles to go! Whether the decision taken by the Centre is right or wrong is still being debated. We hope it proves to be beneficial for the state as well as the country as a whole.
Long Essay on Article 370: Revocation (600 words)
Article 370 was enforced by Sheikh Abdullah on 26th January 1957. The article gave special power to the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir. This was a temporary provision.
However, it remained in force for decades. Even though many political leaders and other prominent people in the country suggested its revocation from time to time, it remained intact; however, it has finally been annulled.
Indian President, Ram Nath Kovind issued constitutional order to revoke Article 370 and apply all the rules and provisions of the Indian constitution to Jammu and Kashmir. This historic move was made on 5th August 2019.
Bill to Revoke Provisions of Article 370
Union Home Minister, Amit Shah, moved a resolution in Rajya Sabha to introduce a bill scrapping all the provisions of Article 370. This was approved by President Ram Nath Kovind.
Shah also introduced bills seeking bifurcation of the State into Jammu and Kashmir as a Union Territory with an Assembly and Ladakh as a Union Territory without a legislature.
The opposition benches protested against this resolution; however, the decision has been made. Revoking Article 370 of the Indian Constitution had been a major part of BJP’s agenda. Shah’s announcement was thus received with elation by the BJP leaders.
Mixed Reactions on Revocation of Article 370
While many political parties opposed the decision to scrap Article 370 of the Indian Constitution, several others extended their support to the BJP government.
Parties that Supported the Decision
Among those that showed support to this decision were the Aam Aadmi Party, Bahujan Samaj Party, Shiv Sena, AIADMK, Shiromani Akali Dal, YSR Congress, Telugu Desam Party, Biju Janata Dal, BPF and AGP. All these parties backed the Centre’s decision.
Many of them mentioned that they awaited this move since long and welcome the decision wholeheartedly. They now look forward to peace and development in J&K. The decision of scrapping Article 370 has been termed as bold and courageous.
BSP member, Satish Chandra Misra was among the first ones in the Rajya Sabha to support this move. Mayawati also extended support to the bifurcation of Jammu and Kashmir.
AIADMK mentioned that their leader, Jayalalithaa had always wanted this. Shiv Sena members expressed their joy and support by celebrating outside their party head office.
BJD members said that with this decision, Jammu and Kashmir have become an integral part of the country and they are glad about it.
Parties that Opposed the Decision
The parties that opposed the Centre’s decision to revoke Article 370 include Congress, Trinamool Congress, Nationalist Congress Party, Janata Dal (United), Rashtriya Janta Dal, Left, National Conference, DMK and People’s Democratic Party. All these parties condemned and criticized the resolution.
Congress members mentioned that this was a “catastrophic step” and it should be seen as a “black day” in the constitutional history of our country. It further said that this decision is a publicity stunt by BJP to fetch more votes. Likewise, Left mentioned that it is an attack on the Indian Constitution.
Members of the People’s Democratic Party expressed their anger over the decision by shouting slogans and tearing copies of the Indian Constitution. National Conference called the decision shocking and unilateral. Trinamool Congress also expressed its objection against the Centre’s decision.
DMK went on to say that this was simply the murder of democracy. It said that BJP is forcing its agenda and that it has no respect for the sentiments of the Jammu and Kashmir residents.
Revocation of Article 370 of the Indian Constitution is indeed a big decision. A major change in J&K is likely underway now. We hope things change for good for this beautiful state which has long struggled for peace and justice. The Centre must make special efforts to resurrect J&K and make it a better and safer place to live.