“We can’t see this anymore, the constitutional immorality.” Political leaders against J&K Bill

Political party leaders who opposed the centre government’s move to scrap Article 370, which grants special status to the state of Jammu and Kashmir

Terming the government’s move on Article 370 “unilateral and shocking”, former Kashmir chief minister and National Conference leader Omar Abdullah said it was a total “betrayal of trust” of the people of Jammu and Kashmir.

“Government of India (GOI)’s unilateral and shocking decisions today are a total betrayal of the trust that the people of Jammu & Kashmir had reposed in India when the state acceded to it in 1947. The decisions will have far-reaching and dangerous consequences. This is an aggression against people of the State as had been warned by an all-parties meeting in Srinagar yesterday. GOI has resorted to deceit and stealth in recent weeks to lay the ground for these disastrous decisions. Our darkest apprehensions have unfortunately come true after the GOI and its representatives in J&K lied to us that nothing major was planned,” he said.

Former Jammu and Kashmir CM and PDP leader Mehbooba Mufti who was placed under house arrest said, “Today marks the darkest day in Indian democracy. It will have catastrophic consequences for the subcontinent.”

“Decision of J&K leadership to reject 2 nation theory in 1947 & align with India has backfired. Unilateral decision of GOI to scrap Article 370 is illegal & unconstitutional which will make India an occupational force in J&K. GOIs intentions are clear. They want the territory of J&K by terrorising it’s people. India has failed Kashmir in keeping its promises. People like us who placed faith in Parliament, the temple of democracy have been deceived. Those elements in J&K who rejected the ???? constitution & sought resolution under the UN have been vindicated. This will exacerbate the alienation Kashmiris feel.”

Opposing the scrapping of Article 370 and the bifurcation of Jammu and Kashmir into two Union Territories, leader of Oppositon Ghulam Nabi Azad said in the Rajya Sabha, ” Shameful that you have turned J&K into a non entity by making a Lt Governor there, so that you can appoint even a peon or a clerk, sitting here(Delhi). ” 

Former Finance Minister P Chidambaram opposed the scrapping of Article 370 in the Rajya Sabha. “Momentarily you (govt) may think you have scored a victory, but you are wrong and history will prove you to be wrong. Future generations will realize what a grave mistake this house is making today.” 

Senior Congress leader M Veerappa Moily said on Monday the NDA government was playing with fire by scrapping Article 370 just to fulfil its political agenda without taking the consensus of the country and holding appropriate consultations with stakeholders.

Calling the move an assault on the federal structure of democracy, the former Union minister said the notification issued by President Ram Nath Kovind to scrap Article 370 conferring special status to Jammu and Kashmir is “unethical, illegal and also unconstitutional” and “intends to rewrite the history of Kashmir nay – India”.

DMK chief MK Stalin opposed the government’s proposal to scrap Article 370. In a tweet, Stalin said, “The decision by the Centre to repeal Article 370 and re-organise Jammu & Kashmir with many State leaders under house arrest and through a pliant Governor goes against the grain of democracy and constitutionalism. This is a dark day in the history of Indian federalism.”

” I think Govt of India should have taken them (leaders of the valley) into confidence which unfortunately the govt didn’t do. And then they should have taken the decision (to revoke 370),” NCP leader Sharad Pawar told news agency ANI. 

Congress leader Shashi Tharoor: “This is not the Indian democracy we have cherished for more than seven decades. The assurances that successive rulers of India including those of BJP have given people & leaders of Kashmir and the international community now stand torn into shreds.”

TMC MP Derek O’Brien said, “From 11 am this morning, we’ve been seeing procedural harakiri. We can’t see this anymore, the constitutional immorality.”

Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav says that even as he welcomes that any attempts to strengthen the integrity of India, the process should be dictated by consensus, not threats. “Any move that seeks to strengthen the integrity of India is to be welcomed. But in a democracy decisions must be made by consensus, not by threat, force or fear. All parties should be part of talks and due process. Nothing should be unilateral for that only leads to more strife,” his post on social media said.

Secretary-General of CPI Sitaram Yechury terms the government’s move against Article 370 “absolutely undemocratic”

CPI(M) leader KK Ragesh warns the government of creating a “Palestine in India”. “People of Kashmir should feel that they are a part of India. I am requesting the government to be careful while taking such a step,” the CPI(M) leader said.

Congress leader Kapil Sibal says history will tell if the decision to scrap Article 370 was historic or a blot on Indian history.

Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh accused Modi government of rewriting Constitution of India without following any legal provisions. “Such a historic decision should not have been taken and pushed through in this arbitrary manner,” the Congress leader said.

Loktantrik Janata Dal leader Sharad Yadav has slammed the government. He said the move has all the ingredients to “spoil the environment of the country and can be terrible.”

MDMK leader MP Vaiko was not at all happy with the government’s decision. He said the government has “murdered democracy” today. “I am opposing this Bill (Article 370). This is a day of shame, shame, shame…this is the murder of democracy,” he added.

CPI(M)’s TK Rangarajan said in Rajya Sabha that it is a black day as the BJP government has “raped” the Indian Constitution. “It is a black day. Indian constitution has been raped by BJP govt. You didn’t consult people of J&K-Ladakh. You dissolved Assembly, you don’t want to hold any election. You’ve taken another 35,000 Army people there. You’re creating another Palestine,” he said as quoted by news agency ANI.

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