Tribune News Service
New Delhi, November 9
The Sajad Gani Lone-led Jammu and Kashmir People’s Conference (JKPC) has moved the Supreme Court of India demanding early hearing of petitions challenging the nullification of Articles 370 and 35A of the Constitution.
Referring to the “sweeping changes” introduced in Jammu & Kashmir by the Centre, the plea filed through JKPC spokesperson Adnan Ashraf, stated that such changes will have an irreparable impact on the rights of people of the erstwhile state.
This is the second such plea recently filed in the top court, which is seized of a batch of petitions challenging the Presidential Orders nullifying Article 370 of the Constitution and bifurcation of Jammu and Kashmir into two union territories.
Earlier, petitioner Shakir Shabir had demanded early hearing, expressing the apprehension that mere passage of time can render the abrogation of Article 370 permanent, making the petitions infructuous.
He had pointed out that since the promulgation of the Constitution (Application to Jammu and Kashmir) Order, 2019, amending Article 367 of the Constitution of India and abrogating Article 370 on August 5, 2019, several laws had been passed, effecting key changes in Jammu and Kashmir.
The Supreme Court had on August 28, 2019, referred petitions challenging Presidential Orders nullifying Article 370 of the Constitution and bifurcation of Jammu and Kashmir into two union territories to a five-judge Constitution Bench. In March this year, the top court had refused to refer it to a larger Bench.
The Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Act, 2019, which divided the state into two union territories—Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh—has already been notified in the official gazette and would come into effect on October 31.
There are several petitions challenging the Presidential Order nullifying Article 370, including those by Delhi-based advocate ML Sharma, Jammu and Kashmir-based lawyer Shakir Shabir, National Conference Lok Sabha MPs Mohammad AKbar Lone and Justice (Retd) Hasnain Masoodi, bureaucrat-turned-politician Shah Faesal and his party colleague Shehla Rashid.
There is another PIL filed by former interlocutor for Jammu and Kashmir Radha Kumar, Air Vice Marshal (Retd) Kapil Kak, Major General (Retd) Ashok Mehta, and former IAS officers Hindal Haidar Tyabji, Amitabha Pande and Gopal Pillai who have urged the top court to declare the August 5 Presidential Orders be declared “unconstitutional, void and inoperative”.