In a 2019 historic move, the Narendra Modi government took a decisive step by revoking Article 370, altering the landscape of Jammu and Kashmir. This landmark decision not only changed the geographical and political dynamics but also ushered in a series of transformations in the region.
On 11th December 2023, the Supreme Court backed the Centre’s move to scrap special status to Jammu and Kashmir under Article 370. The Supreme Court has also ordered for elections to be held in 2024 in Jammu and Kashmir.
Let’s delve into the significant changes that followed the abolition of Article 370.
1. Ladakh Becomes a Separate Union Territory:
Post the revocation, Ladakh was carved out as a separate Union Territory. This move aimed at facilitating more focused governance tailored to the unique needs of the region.
2. Property Ownership and Flag Revisions:
With Article 370 out of the picture, the restriction on property ownership was lifted, allowing any citizen of India to buy property in Jammu and Kashmir. Moreover, the region’s separate flag ceased to exist, and the tricolor national flag became the sole symbol of unity.
3. Applicability of National Laws:
Previously, laws passed by the Indian Parliament did not apply uniformly to Jammu and Kashmir. The revocation of Article 370 brought about a fundamental shift, extending the applicability of all laws across the region.
4. Abolition of Governor’s Office:
The post of Governor in Jammu and Kashmir was abolished, marking a departure from the earlier governance structure. The state police now falls under the jurisdiction of the Centre.
5. End of Dual Citizenship:
The removal of Article 370 dismantled the concept of dual citizenship, granting every citizen of India the right to vote and contest elections in Jammu and Kashmir.
6. Jammu and Kashmir Split into Two Union Territories:
The erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir was bifurcated into two Union Territories – Jammu and Kashmir with a Legislative Assembly and Ladakh without an assembly.
7. Applicability of RTI and CAG:
The introduction of the national Right to Information (RTI) and Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) laws extended transparency and accountability measures to Jammu and Kashmir.
8. Financial Emergency and Presidential Rule:
The power to impose financial emergency under Article 360 of the Indian Constitution now applies to Jammu and Kashmir. This change provides a broader mechanism for managing financial crises.
9. Women’s Rights:
The removal of Article 370 has had a positive impact on women’s rights in Jammu and Kashmir. Women now retain property rights even if they marry a temporary resident, ensuring equality in property ownership.
10. Socio-Political Shifts:
While the region has witnessed positive changes, there are still challenges, including scams and rising unemployment. The political landscape is evolving, and the youth are actively participating in discussions on their future.
FAQs on Article 370:
What is Article 370?
Article 370 was a provision in the Indian Constitution that granted special autonomy to the region of Jammu and Kashmir.
Is Article 370 removed from J&K?
Yes, the Narendra Modi government abolished Article 370, fundamentally altering the status of Jammu and Kashmir.
What are the benefits of Article 370 removal in Kashmir?
The removal of Article 370 brought about uniformity in the application of laws, opened up property ownership to all citizens of India, and facilitated socio-economic and political changes in the region.
Who controls Kashmir today?
Following the revocation of Article 370, governance in Jammu and Kashmir is now directly under the jurisdiction of the central government of India.