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Kashmir’s accession to India

Kashmir’s accession to India

The decision by Hari Singh, maharaja of Kashmir, to sign the Instrument of Accession in October 1947—thus joining Kashmir to the Indian union —precipitated warfare between India and Pakistan that culminated in the establishment of the line of control (cease-fire line)in the region in July 1949. Jammu and Kashmir state thus became the territory that India administered on its side of the line. China’s presence in portions of the area along the northern border of the state has also been contested by India. Meanwhile, the process of formalizing Jammu and Kashmir’s status as a state took several years and was completed only in 1957.In August 2019 the national government suspended Jammu and Kashmir’s autonomy and applied India’s constitution fully to the territory. It also passed legislation to make the state at a later date to a union territory—thereby allowing the union government full control over its governance—and to split the Ladakh region off into a separate union territory of its own.

Exodous of Kashmiri Pandits and militancyThe run-up: 1980s to 1990

✓ In Anantnag, the constituency of then Congress leader Mufti Mohammad Sayeed,there was a series of attacks on Hindu temples, and shops and properties of Kashmiri Pandits, planned by separatist andsecessionists.

✓ Pandits had begun to be targeted. Eminent persons of the community were beingshot dead.

THE NIGHT OF JANUARY 19, 1990

✓ Matters came to a head on January 19. By then, the Farooq Abdullah government had been dismissed and Governor’s Rule imposed.

✓ According to accounts published by many eminent Kashmiri Pandits, there were threatening slogans over loudspeakers from mosques, and on the streets.

✓ Speeches were made extolling Pakistan and the supremacy of Islam, and against Hinduism. Finally, the Kashmiri Pandit community were forced to leave. THE GAWKADAL MASSACRE

✓ On January 21, the CRPF gunned down 160 Kashmiri Muslim protesters at the Gawkadal Bridge, which has come to be known as the worst massacre in the long history of the conflict in Kashmir.

✓ The two events — the flight of the Pandits and the Gawkadal massacre — took place within 48 hours. HOW MANY PANDITS LEFT?

✓ According to some estimates, notably by the Kashmiri Pandit Sangharsh Samiti (KPSS),of 75,343 Kashmiri Pandit families in January 1990, more than 70,000 fledbetween 1990and 1992 and continued until 2000.

✓ The KPSS has placed the number of Kashmiri Pandits killed by militants from 1990to 2011 at 399, the majority during 1989-90.

✓ Some 800 families have remained in the Valley through these three decades.

✓ Those who had means rebuilt their lives elsewhere in the country — Delhi, Pune,Mumbai and Ahmedabad have Pandit populations, also Jaipur and Lucknow — orwent abroad.

✓ The fleeing Pandits did not think they would never return to the Valley. But as the situation in Kashmir spiraled into a full-blown militancy, return began to look remoteifnot impossible.

✓ The longing to return to the Valley did not diminish over the years, though it may have become more an idea than a real ambition.

✓ In many cases, their properties were either immediately vandalised or sold quickly by the owners to Kashmiri Muslims. Many fell into disrepair.

ABROGATION OF ARTICLE 370 and 35A

Article 370 and 35A acted as psychological barriers which prevented kashmir from developing like the rest of the country and impoverished kashmir’s locals culturally and economically.With Article 370’s abolition, Article 35A was also made null and void. Article 370 had been enabling legislation allowing the existence of Article 35A and bolstering its effectiveness.For years now, Article 370 and Article 35A held the erstwhile state from achieving its true potential. The statehood provided enough incentives for the local politicians to continue to deprive the population of growth and development, making it one of the lowest contributors to the country’s GDP. After 370 was removed – Steep decline in Terrorism Terrorism was one of the greatest banes afflicting the former state of Jammu and Kashmir. Pakistani terrorists, with the help of radical Kashmiris and separatist politicians, intruded into Jammu and Kashmir,and from there to the rest of the country to carry out their nefarious activities. But after the abrogation of Article 370, there has been a marked decline in the number of terror-related incidents in the newly carved union territories. Growth and development To bolster economic growth and development, the Jammu and Kashmir administration has so far signed more than 168 MoUs worth Rs 13,600 crores for investments. Additionally, 6,000 acres of government land has been acquired for setting up industries in the state.Earlier, some constraints discouraged industrialists and large organisations from investing in Jammu and Kashmir. But after the abolition of Article 370, all the obstacles that came into the path of development were removed as the government placed its focus on providing an impetus to business and the economy.The J&K Infrastructure Development Finance Corporation has been set up to provide financial support to various projects that were commissioned years ago but were yet to be completed. Domicile rule and Central laws now extend to Jammu and Kashmir Article 370 ensured that excluding Articles 1 and 370, no other provision of the Indian Constitution applied to the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir unless specifically made applicable by a constitutional order issued with the concurrence of the state government. Laws such as the Right to Education, Prevention of Child Marriage, Untouchability Act and many others could be not be applied to Jammu and Kashmir because of the existence of Article 370.But after its abrogation, all the central laws have been extended to Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh. Anew Domicile rule was implemented, which allowed all those persons and their children who have resided in the former state for 15 years or studied here for seven years and completed their 10th or 12thexamination in an educational institution in the J&K to apply for domicile. Marginalised Hindu communities that were earlier denied citizenship, perhaps because the Kashmiri Leadership feared “demographic shift” in the Muslim-dominated state, were among those granted domicile status. The Scheduled Caste Valmiki community; refugees from West Pakistan, several of whom are members of Scheduled Castes; and Gorkhas, brought by the Dogra kings to serve the princely state’s army ,were few of the many communities that benefitted from the new domicile law. Property rights of women restored, their non-resident spouses made eligible for domicile. Women have been amongst the most disadvantaged sections of the former state. Not only were they constitutionally denied rights, but their existing rights were also gradually eroded. Women who married men from outside Jammu and Kashmir were deprived of property rights. But that changed, after the abrogation of Article 370.Women in Jammu and Kashmir are now able to buy real estate and transfer property to children, even if they get married to a non-resident. Rehabilitation of Kashmiri Pandits The central government is taking every possible step to right the historical wrong of the Kashmiri Pandit exodus. As a part of its initiative to rehabilitate Kashmiri Pandits in the Valley, the Centre announced special jobs for the community members under the PM package. Rehabilitation of Kashmiri Pandits The central government is taking every possible step to right the historical wrong of the Kashmiri Pandit exodus. As a part of its initiative to rehabilitate Kashmiri Pandits in the Valley, the Centre announced special jobs for the community members under the PM package.