Jammu and Kashmir National Conference on Saturday took out a protest rally across the state expressing dismay over the union cabinet’s decision of bringing amendments to the constitution applicable to J&K Order of 1954 terming it as a blatant violation of Art 370.
The major protest rally was held at Srinagar which was taken out from party headquarters, Nawa- e- Subha. The rally saw huge participation of party’s Srinagar district functionaries, office bearers and workers.
The protesting functionaries and workers held placards saying ‘stop fiddling with Art 370 and Art 35-A’, ‘united to protect our special status’, ‘save Art 35-A and Art 370’.
Among others party’s senior leader former speaker Mubarak Gul, women’s wing president Shamema Firdous, District president Srinagar Peer Afaq, Tanvir Sadiq, Irfan Shah, Showkat Mir, Mushtaq Guroo, Er. Sabiya Qadri, Ahsan Pardesi, Mudasir Shahmiri, G N Tailbali, Kaiser Jalali, YNC functionaries.
While addressing the rally Mubarak Gul said, “The move is detrimental to the interests of the state. The decision has bypassed the authority of our elected legislature. Governor administration has no popular mandate to make such recommendations which impact our unique identity. Its the prerogative of the state legislature to bring about amendments to the state constitution. The recent union cabinet decision is a malafied attempt to remove what remains left of our special position, we strongly condemn it.”
Speaking at the rally Shameema Firdous said, “At the time when the nation is grappling with war rhetoric and our traders and students are being intimidated the decision of union cabinet has come as a bolt out of blue.”
“The decision will prove counterproductive and alienate the people of our troubled state. The erosion of our autonomy is the primary cause of discontent in our state. But let me make it clear we would offer stiff resistance to any such move that is aimed to fiddle with our special status,” she said.
While addressing the rally she said that the governor is an appointee of the union government. “The party is studying the legal aspects of the decision, we will take a legal course to safeguard our unique status. It is a dangerous move, it sans jurisdiction.”
The protesting functionaries maintained that the party is not against granting reservation to specific groups; however, such a decision should have been left to the elected legislature to decide upon. The protesting functionaries maintained that the governor administration has no moral and political authority to take such decisions by belittling and berating the authority of the state’s elected legislature.
Similar protests led by respective district presidents were held across the state. In north Kashmir’s Kupwara Qaisar Jamsheed Lone led the protest. In Baramulla the protests were led by Javaid Dar, GN Rahi, Dr Sajad Uri, in Bandipora, the protests were led by Mir Ghulam Rasool Naz.
In South Kashmir, the protest rallies against the union cabinet’s decision were held at all district headquarters. In Anantnag the protests were led by Dr Bashir Ahmad Veeri, in Kulgam the protest was led by in-charge Kulgam constituency Imran Nabi Dar and Abdul Rehman Tantray, in Pulwama GM Mir, GN Ratanpuri, and Javaid Rahim Bhat led the protests.
The protesters also demand an end to arbitrary arrests in the valley. “Unfortunate that the career of over one lakh students studying in JeI affiliated schools is under threat. The government needs to relook at this decision,” Dr Veeri said adding, “Arrests and bans are no solution. The only way to address an issue is through dialogue.”
In central Kashmir, similar protests were held at Budgam and Ganderbal districts. In Ganderbal the protest was led by district president Sheikh Ishfaq Jabar. In Budgam the protests were led by AM Dar, Abdul Ahad Dar.
Party’s functionaries and workers took out similar protest rallies in Kargil and Leh as well.
In Jammu party functionaries took out rallies expressing their dismay over the move of GOI in Chenab, Pir Panchal regions including other parts of the Jammu division.