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How dare a Muslim dominated state exist in India? Reactions pour against Article 370 abrogation

Scrapping the special status of Jammu and Kashmir is the wrong way to an end" The Hindu said

Tuesday August 6, 2019 3:48 PM, ummid.com News Network

Reactions on Kashmir

[Senior Congress leader and Leader of the Opposition in the House, Ghulam Nabi Azad, participating in the debate on Article 370 in Rajya Sabha Monday. (Video Grab)]

New Delhi: While the BJP and its affiliates are hailing the abrogation of Article 370 as "necessary correction of mistakes committed in the past", almost the entire mainstream media in India have questioned the move, especially downgrading of Kashmir from a State to a Union Territory.

"Even if Article 370 were to be scrapped, the proposal to alter Jammu and Kashmir’s status to Union Territory, even if temporarily, is designed to humiliate an already subjugated population", Pratap Bhanu Mehta, Contributing Editor at the Indian Express, wrote in an Opion piece published Tuesday.

"How dare a Muslim dominated state exist in India? Kashmir can now not even be trusted to be a state", he added.

"The optics of this measure is not integration, it is humiliation, of a piece with subtle and unsubtle reminders to minorities of their place in India", he wrote.

India Betrayed Its Own Constitutional Promises

"India has betrayed its own constitutional promises. India has many asymmetric federalism arrangements outside of Kashmir. This act potentially sets the precedent for invalidating all of them", he wrote.

In an article titled "It’s not a surgical strike. It’s an open-heart surgery, and there will be bleeding", Happymon Jacob, associate professor of disarmament studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) writing for Hindustan Times said, "The easy part, of issuing a Presidential Order, and announcing it in the Parliament, while keeping a tight grip on the security situation in the Valley, is over. Now comes the difficult part of justifying the constitutionality of the decision, and this would most definitely lead to a long drawn out legal battle."

"More significantly, by “un-making” the J&K state, New Delhi has made the entire pro-India political mainstream in the Valley politically irrelevant, administratively powerless, and worthless from a conflict-resolution perspective. Consider a moment, the combined effect of the disillusionment and alienation of the Kashmiri youth and the irrelevance of the mainstream Kashmiri political class. It is unlikely to be good news", he wrote.

No Magic Bullets In Conflict Resolution

"The Indian State might win the day with sheer force, but what of its legitimacy in a state where everyone, including the pro-India parties, would be bitter, angry and desperate?" he added.

"The BJP seems to think that its radical steps vis-à-vis Kashmir is some sort of a magic bullet for all of Kashmir’s ills, and that’s exactly where it may have faulted in its judgement. For one, there are no magic bullets in conflict resolution, and more importantly, minority rights, in this case those of the Kashmiris, can’t be divorced from the inherent workings of a mature democracy", he wrote.

In its Editorial published on Tuesday, The Hindu, said, "Scrapping the special status of Jammu and Kashmir is the wrong way to an end" adding, "The special status of J&K was never meant to be permanent, but it should not have been scrapped without wider consultations."

"True, the special status of J&K was meant to end, but only with the concurrence of its people. The Centre’s abrupt move disenfranchised them on a matter that directly affected their life and sentiments", it wrote.

"The mechanism that the government used to railroad its rigid ideological position on Jammu and Kashmir through the Rajya Sabha was both hasty and stealthy. This move will strain India’s social fabric not only in its impact on Jammu and Kashmir but also in the portents it holds for federalism, parliamentary democracy and diversity", the leading English daily said.

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