Article 370, Jammu and Kashmir: Home Minister Amit Shah moves resolution in Lok Sabha

The Union Government passed a Presidential Order under Article 370(1) of the Indian Constitution, to replace the 1954 Presidential Order which, along with several other Presidential Orders, specifies which provisions of India’s Constitution apply to Jammu and Kashmir. The superseded Order was unique in that it lays out most of the details on the special status accorded to Jammu and Kashmir under the Indian Constitution.

The new Presidential Order issued yesterday states that all provisions of the Indian Constitution shall apply to the State of Jammu and Kashmir. In addition to the provisions of the Indian Constitution, Jammu and Kashmir will also be subjected to a new Article 367(4) which effectively says:

  • The Constitution will be construed as applying to Jammu and Kashmir;
  • References to the Sadar-i-Riyasat of Jammu and Kashmir shall mean “Governor”;
  • References to the Government of Jammu and Kashmir shall mean Governor acting on the aid and advice of the Council of Ministers;
  • Reference in Art 370(3) of the Constitution of India to “Constituent Assembly” of the State shall mean “Legislative Assembly of the State”.

What has changed in Jammu and Kashmir?

Rajya Sabha on 5th August 2019 approved the Jammu and Kashmir reorganization Bill, 2019. The states will be now replaced by two new Union Territories Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh. UTs have become states earlier; this is the first time that a state has been converted into a UT. The UT of Jammu and Kashmir will have an Assembly, like in Delhi and Puducherry.

It is also likely that corporates and individuals will be able to buy land in Jammu and Kashmir. Non-Kashmiris might now get jobs in Kashmir. A process of demographic change might begin, and progress over the coming decades.

Sixty-five years later, the order has been rolled back through a package of decision that aims to not only end the special status for the state but also redefine its future relationship closer to the Centre as a Union Territory.