Chapter 1 Current Updates
Jammu and Kashmir after Reorganisation Act, 2019
- People from other states will now be eligible to serve and purchase land.
- Legislative Assembly duration in Union Territory of J&K will be 5 years.
- There will be Common HC for J&K, and Ladakh UTs.
- There will be Single citizenship only.
- Tricolour flag will be the only flag to hoisted in Jammu & Kashmir (UT) and Ladakh (UT).
- Provisions of the Indians Constitution are applicable in the State.
- UT Administration will have to frame the rules of the services of State cadre and other officers as number of employees from Ladakh are posted in Jammu and Kashmir divisions and vice versa.
- Jammu and Kashmir Police will come under control of the Union Home Ministry.
- The process for fresh delimitation will be carried out be setting up a Delimitation Commission.
- J&K, Reorganization Bill comes into forces and J&K and Ladakh are declared as UTs.
- No permission will be required to set up industry and non-locals will be eligible to apply for jobs in the UTs unless the administration imposes a cap, with effect from 31st Oct. 2019.
- There will be no separate Constitution.
- West Pakistani refugees and Valmikis, who had been denied state subject right even after 72 years of settlement in the State, will be equal stakeholders now.
- Leh and Kargil districts will have Autonomous Councils, Municipalities and Panchayats. It may be mentioned here that law and order of the UTs is directly controlled by the Central.
- UT can’t make laws pertaining to Law and Orders, Police.
- UT to have only nine Ministers.
- UT Ladakh to have Advisors.
- PSC for J&K UT, UPSC for Ladakh.
19.4 RS members to continue with their term.
- With abrogation of Article 370, Jammu and Kashmir is as much part of India as all other States.
- Article 360 (Financial Emergency) will be applicable.
- Minorities will be eligible for reservation in services.
J&K and Ladakh are Now Union Territories
- J&K will now have no separate flag or Constitution. Tenure of assembly will be for 5 years, not 6; Indian Penal Code will replace Ranbir Penal Code.
- People from other states are now eligible to purchase land and properties. Non-permanent residents can permanently settle in state.
- Outsiders can now be employed in state govt and companies and be eligible for scholarships in state- run educational institutions.
- RTI Act will be applicable in J&K.
Ending Jammu and Kashmir’s special status in the Indian Union, the BJP government extended all provisions of the Constitution to the State in one go, downsized the State into two Union Territories and allowed all citizens to vote and buy property in the State. The Union Territory (UT) will have a Lieutenant Governor and the maximum strength of its Assembly will be of 107 seats, which will be further enhanced to 114 after a delimitation exercise according to the act passed by Parliament on August 6, 2019. Twenty-four seats of the Assembly continue to remain vacant as they fall under Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK).
The UT of Ladakh will have Kargil and Leh districts. There shall be a Council of Ministers in the successor UT of J&K consisting of not more than 10 per cent of the total number of members in the Legislative Assembly, with the Chief Minister as the head to aid and advise the Lieutenant Governor in the exercise of his functions in relation to matters with respect to which the Legislative Assembly has power to make laws. The new UT would have reservation in the Assembly seats.
First time a state has become a UT
There have been earlier instances of a category C state (as former chief commissioners’ territories were classified at the time of adoption of the Constitution) becoming a UT. But this is the first time after the 1956 states’ reorganisation that a full- fledged state has been relegated to a UT (or two).
As per the Act the Lieutenant Governor of the successor UT of J&K may nominate two members to the Legislative Assembly to give representation to women, if in his opinion women are not adequately represented in the Legislative Assembly. The Act said the Lok Sabha would have five seats from the UT of J&K, while Ladakh would have one seat. Jammu and Kashmir will be the largest union territory (UT) in the country in terms of area once it is carved out, following the Centre’s move to bifurcate the state. Ladakh will be the second largest UT after it comes into force.
With this, the total number of UTs in the country will go up to nine—J&K, Ladakh, Delhi, Puducherry, Diu and Daman, Dadra and Nagar Haveli, Chandigarh, Lakshadweep and Andaman and Nicobar Islands. Currently, only two UTs— Delhi and Puducherry—have Legislative Assemblies. With addition of J&K, the number will go up to three. UTs with Legislative Assemblies have Lt Governors.
Article 370: Article 370 was incorporated in Part XXI (temporary provisions with respect to the State ) of the Constition. The state’s constituent assembly had wanted only those aspects of the Indian Constitution that reflected what Hari Singh had signed away. Besides Article 1, it was the only other article of the Indian Constitution that automatically applied to J&K. The other provisions of the Indian statute could apply to the state only if its constituent assembly concurred. Article 370 provided Jammu & Kashmir with special status, allowing it its own state constitution. The Union of India could legislate/act only in defence, foreign affairs and communications. Since the 1950s, there have been afforts to pull the state into a deeper embrace with the Union, but Art 370 was strengthened when Sheikh Abdullah, who had become the second Prime Minister of J&K in 1948 and was later dismissed, came to an agreement—after spells of detention — with Prime Minister Indira Gandhi in 1975.
35A Defines who is a Permanent Resident: Article 35A was made part of the Indian Constitution in 1954, through a presidential order—through its genesis goes back to early 20th century Dogra apprehensions of an influx from Punjab, which they feared would change the state’s demographic and land ownership patterns. The article, which defines who is a permanent resident of J&K and lays down laws restricting property purchase and ownership to such permanent residents, also discriminated against women, depriving them of their state subject rights if they married non-permanent residents.
Administrative Council of J&K UT Constituted
The UT administration on November 19, 2019 constituted an Administrative Council, headed by the Lt-Governor as its chairman and his Advisers as members, to dispose of the cases of various kinds, comprising those involving legislation, including the issue of ordinances. According to a government order, the Chief Secretary would function as Secretary to the Administrative Council. The Administrative Secretaries of the Departments of Finance, Planning, Development & Monitoring, General Administration, Law or of any other department would be invited to the meetings of the council as required by it.
2 Advisers to J&K L-G Appointed
In a bid to expedite restoration of normalcy in the newly-created Union Territory, the home ministry on November 14, 2019 appointed two advisors to the Lt Governor Girish Chandra Murmu. The new advisors are former IAS officer KK Sharma and retired IPS officer Farooq Khan. The two were also advisors to former Governor Satya Pal Malik when he was Governor of J&K when it was a full State before October 31,2019.
J&K Upper House Abolished
The bicameral (two-tier) legislature in Jammu and Kashmir came to an end on October 17, 2019 with the government abolishing 62-year-old Legislative Council, the Upper House of Legislature. The council was abolished under Section 57 of the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Bill, 2019, introduced in the Rajya Sabha on August 5, 2019 and subsequently passed by both Houses of Parliament.
J&K Block Development Council Polls
Over 200 Independents were elected to the post of chairperson in the first- ever Block Development Council (BDC) elections in Jammu and Kashmir, with the BJP winning in 81 of the 310 blocks. The Congress, the National Conference and the PDP stayed away from the elections, the first after abrogation of the state’s special status, because of continued detention of their leaders. Elections were held in 283 blocks on October 24, 2019 as twenty-seven candidates were elected unopposed.
Salary Bonanza for J&K and Ladakh
Government employees of the new Union Territories and Ladakh will get salaries and other benefits as per the recommendation of the 7th Central Pay Commission from October 31, the Union Home Ministry said on October 22, 2019. The move will benefit 4.5 lakhovernment employees working in the UTs of J&K and Ladakh.
J&K Panchayat Members to Get Protection, ‘ 2-Lakh Cover
Union Home Minister Amit Shah on September 3, 2019 assured a panchayat delegation from Jammu and Kashmir that those vulnerable to threats from terrorists would get police protection and an insurance cover of ‘ 2 lakh each.
The earliest administrative unit in the State was known as “PARGANA”. It was during the Dogra regime that the PARGANAS were reorganized and named as Zilas and Tehsils. The Zilas were further re-designated as Wazarats. In 1892, on the recommendation of Sir Walter Lawrence, there were some re-adjustments in the Wazarats. Consequent upon loss of huge territory of the State to Pakistan in 1947, the Wazarats were reorganized in 1951. Simultaneously the nomenclature of Wazarats was also changed and redesignated as Districts. For administrative convenience the Districts were sub divided into Tehsils and Niabats. Jammu and Kashmir (UT) has 20 districts and Ladakh (UT) has 2 districts.
Jammu & Kashmir Reorganisation
What is Article 370?
Article 370 of the Indian Constitution is a ‘temporary provision’ which grants special autonomous status to Jammu & Kashmir. Under Part XXI of the Constitution of India, which deals with “Temporary, Transitional and Special provisions”, the state of Jammu & Kashmir has been accorded special status under Article 370. All the provisions of the Constitution which are applicable to other states are not applicable to J&K.
Important provisions under the article
According to this article, except for defence, foreign affairs, finance and communications, Parliament needs the state government’s concurrence for applying all other laws. Thus the state’s residents live under a separate set of laws, including those related to citizenship, ownership of property, and fundamental rights, as compared to other Indians.
- Indian citizens from other states cannot purchase land or property in Jammu & Kashmir.
- Under Article 370, the Centre has no power to declare financial emergency under Article 360 in the state. It can declare emergency in the state only in case of war or external aggression. The Union government can therefore not declare emergency on grounds of internal disturbance or imminent danger unless it is made at the request or with the concurrence of the state government.
- Under Article 370, the Indian Parliament cannot increase or reduce the borders of the state.
- The Jurisdiction of the Parliament of India in relation to Jammu and Kashmir is confined to the matters enumerated in the Union List, and also the concurrent list. There is no State list for the State of Jammu and Kashmir.
- At the same time, while in relation to the other States, the residuary power of legislation belongs to Parliament, in the case of Jammu and Kashmir, the residuary powers belong to the Legislature of the State, except certain matters to which Parliament has exclusive powers such as preventing the activities relating to cession or secession, or disrupting the sovereignty or integrity of India.
- The power to make laws related to preventive detention in Jammu and Kashmir belong to the Legislature of J & K and not the Indian Parliament. Thus, no preventive detention law made in India extends to Jammu & Kashmir.
- Part IV (Directive Principles of the State Policy) and Part IVA (Fundamental Duties) of the Constitution are not applicable to J&K.
Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Act, 2019
- It is an act by the Indian Parliament where the State of Jammu and Kashmir was bifurcated into two union territories — Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh.
- The Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir will have a legislative assembly,
- Whereas the Union Territory of Ladakh will not have a legislative assembly and will be administered by the Lieutenant Governor alone.
- The Union Territory of Ladakh will include the districts Leh and Kargil which will, in effect, cease to be part of the existing state of Jammu and Kashmir.
- The remaining territories will remain with Jammu and Kashmir after the bifurcation.
- Representation in the House of People: Out of the six Lok Sabha seats in the state of Jammu and Kashmir, five will remain with the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir and one will go to the Union Territory of Ladakh.
- The Election Commission may conduct Lok Sabha elections for both the Union Territories as per the allocation of seats specified in the Delimitation of Parliamentary Constituencies Order, 1976 as amended by this act.
Legislative powers of the Union Territory
- The Legislative Assembly may make laws for the whole or any part of the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir with respect to any of the matters enumerated in the state list except on subjects “public order” and “police” which will remain in the domain of the Centre vis-a-vis the LG.
- In case of inconsistencies between laws made by Parliament and laws made by the Legislative Assembly, earlier law shall prevail and law made by the Legislative Assembly shall be void.
Role and powers of the Lieutenant Governor
- The Governor of the existing State of Jammu and Kashmir shall be the Lieutenant Governor for the Union territory of Jammu and Kashmir, and the Union Territory of Ladakh for such period as may be determined by the President.
- Appointment of L-G in Ladakh: The President shall appoint the L-G under article 239.
- The L-G will be assisted by advisors appointed by the Centre since the Union Territory will not have a Legislative Assembly.
- In the case of Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir, the L-G shall “act in his discretion” on issues which fall outside the purview of powers conferred on the Legislative Assembly, in which he is required to exercise any judicial functions, and/or matters related to All India services and the Anti-Corruption Bureau.
The Union Territory
- The Jammu and Kashmir Legislative Assembly will have a tenure of five years unless it’s dissolved earlier by the L-G.
- Provisions contained under Article 239a of the constitution that are applicable to Puducherry shall be applicable here as well.
- This allows the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir to function as a legislative assembly under an administrator appointed under the said Article. In this case, it will be the LG.
- The delimitation of constituencies following the bifurcation may be determined by the Election Commission.
- The constituencies will be reorganised through a de-limitation exercise under the 2002 Act of Parliament.
- For the purpose of delimitation, the 2011 census figures will be taken as the benchmark.
- The number of seats in the Legislative Assembly of Jammu and Kashmir shall be increased from 107 to 114.
- The state assembly currently has 111 seats, of which 46 are in the Valley, 37 in Jammu and the remaining four are in the Ladakh division.
- Of these, 24 seats would be deemed to be vacant till the time Pakistan- Occupied Kashmir comes under the jurisdiction of the Indian state.
- With this, the existing legislative council in Jammu and Kashmir stands abolished. “Every member thereof ceases to be such member and all bills pending in the Legislative Council shall lapse. ”
- Four sitting members of the council of states (Rajya Sabha) representing the existing state of Jammu and Kashmir shall be deemed to have been elected to fill the seats allocated to the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir. Their term of office remaining unaltered.
- The High Court of the existing state of Jammu and Kashmir will be the common High Court of the two Union Territories.
- The new Assembly shall have reservations for Scheduled Caste and Tribes as in other parts of the state.