Kashmiri lawyer moves SC against Presidential Order on J&K

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A Kashmiri lawyer has moved the Supreme Court challenging the Presidential order that revoked Article 370, which granted a special status to Jammu and Kashmir (J&K).

Advocate Shakir Shabir in his petition claims that the Presidential Order that amended Article 367, which resulted in the revocation of J&K’s special status, could not have been amended without the concurrence of the state Assembly and was ultra vires the Constitution.

The plea contended that the approval of the state Assembly reflected the will of the people, which was required before effecting such sweeping changes that altered the history and geography of J&K.

“The action taken by the Union government is reckless, absent of any power or constitutional authority. The lives of millions of the inhabitants of the region of Jammu and Kashmir are jeopardised,” said the petition.

Shabir also claimed that the state Governor exercised his powers illegally, as he never consulted the Council of Ministers, which comprised elected representatives from the erstwhile state.

“The decision was taken unilaterally by the Executive, without any consultation with the Legislative Assembly of the state,” argued the petition.

The petition also informed the court about the present situation of “lockdown” in the state. “The people have been forcefully detained in their homes and the entire state has been turned into a garrison. The very fundamentals of a democratic nation have been shaken up by the illegal and arbitrary action of the government,” it added.

So far, two petitions have been filed in the apex court challenging the revoking of Article 370 and making Article 35A redundant.