Mehbooba: PM assured status quo on special status

Time & Us
Last Updated: August 12, 2017 at 12:57 am

Refers to history, says India has to accept idea of Jammu and Kashmir

Srinagar: Chief Minister Mehbboba Mufti on Friday said Prime Minister Narendra Modi assured that Agenda of Alliance’ agreed upon between PDP and BJP should form the basis of any discussion on the State
She said that both BJP and her party, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has to respect AoA and there can’t be any fiddling with ‘status quo’ on Article 370 as it forms the basis of the document.
“The basis of agenda of alliance is the maintenance of a status quo on Article 370. No fiddling with status quo and none of us can go against that,” Mehbooba told reporters outside India Parliament after meeting the Prime Minister amid government of India’s “conscious decision” of having a large debate in Supreme Court to a petition seeking abrogation of Article 35A, a provision in India constitution which bars outsiders from owning property in Jammu and Kashmir.
Mehbooba said that when entire sub-continent was in the middle of difficult times, Jammu and Kashmir, despite being a Muslim majority state, took a “different” decision of joining with “our country, the India.”
The Chief Minister had met the union Home Minister, Rajnath Singh on Thursday.
On the special status of J&K, the AOA states: “While recognizing the different positions and appreciating the perceptions BJP and PDP have on the constitutional status of J&K considering the political and legislative realities, the present position will be maintained on all the constitutional provisions pertaining to J&K including the special status in the Constitution of India.”
She said that the J&K has special diversity being a Muslim majority where people of other faiths, Hindu Sikhs and Buddhists also put up there and “as such a special position of Jammu and Kashmir got established in our country.”
“The idea of India has to accommodate idea of Jammu and Kashmir. Last year, the situation was bad and slowly it is getting better now. Wounds start to heal and in the middle of it, there is this talk about having a discussion on Article 35A and other things. It creates a negative impact on the situation in J&K. The J&K is a very important part of this country and if it remains in pain like we are pushing somebody’s head into water again as he tries to get his head outside it,” she said, adding, “
I talked to PM and informed him that the people of the state feel that their identity is getting endangered and a message should go that J&K is the crown of this country.”
Mehbooba said that the J&K despite being Muslim majority state rejected two nation theory and joined hands with India with the view that aspirations and identity of people will remain intact.
An official statement issued here said The Chief Minister brought to the notice of the Prime Minister the sentiments of the people of the State attached to the special position and also the apprehensions the debate of any abrogation of the same has created in their hearts and minds.
“She informed the Prime Minister that such debates or demands have a very negative impact on the situational progress in the State which is steadily stabilizing after putting in lot of efforts by the State and Central Governments,” she was quoted as having told the PM.
“Such debates and demands only vitiate the atmosphere in the State and the country as a result of which people suffer immensely”, the Chief Minister informed Mr Modi.
Terming Article 370 as the basis of constitutional relationship between the State and the Centre, Mehbooba informed Modi that the Muslim majority Jammu and Kashmir acceded to the union of India by rejecting the two nation theory and consequently due constitutional guarantees were provided to J&K by protecting its regional aspirations and character.
“The need and urge for protecting and respecting this special status also got amply reflected during my recent interactions with leaders of several political parties in the State,” she informed the Prime Minister.
Responding positively to the concerns and apprehensions raised by the Chief Minister, the Prime Minister assured the Chief Minister that ‘Agenda of Alliance’ agreed upon between PDP and BJP should form the basis of any discussion on the State, the spokesman said.
The Prime Minister also reaffirmed the successful implementation of AoA in the State during the tenure of present Government.