Ex-Home Minister Seeks Statehood For J&K

Senior Congress P Chidambaram | File Photo

New Delhi- Seeking restoration of statehood for Jammu and Kashmir, Congress leader P Chidambaram on Monday said Parliament should repeal the “offending” laws in the upcoming Monsoon session and restore the status quo ante there.

He asserted that it is the only way to draw the starting line for a political resolution of the Kashmir issue

“What was made under the Constitution cannot be unmade by an Act of Parliament, misinterpreting and misusing the provisions of the Constitution,” he said.

His remarks come ahead of the June 24 meeting convened by Prime Minister Narendra Modi where 14 political leaders from Jammu and Kashmir, including four former chief ministers, have been invited for talks.

“J&K was a ‘state’ that signed an Instrument of Accession and acceded to India. It must enjoy that status forever. J&K is not a piece of ‘real estate’. J&K is ‘people’. Their rights and wishes must be respected,” he said in a series of tweets.

“In the Monsoon session, Parliament should repeal the offending laws and restore the status quo ante in J&K. That is the only way to draw the starting line for a political resolution of the Kashmir issue,” the former union minister said.

Chidambaram noted that one should remember that the “dismembering” of J&K has been challenged in the Supreme Court and the cases are pending for nearly 2 years.

“Congress Party’s position, reiterated yesterday, that full Statehood must be restored to J&K should clear any doubt or ambiguity,” he also said.

The Congress had on Sunday said it is committed to restoration of full statehood for Jammu and Kashmir and the prime minister and the BJP should accept this demand in the interest of Constitution and democracy.

Congress chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala said depriving Jammu and Kashmir full statehood and not allowing its people to elect their own representatives is a direct attack on democracy and the constitutional principles.

The Central government abrogated the state’s special status and bifurcated it into UTs on August 5, 2019. The erstwhile state has been under the Centre’s rule since June 2018.

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Press Trust of India

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