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June 26, 2000
The implications of granting autonomy to J&K
A look at the implications of the State Autonomy Committee's report which the Jammu and Kashmir assembly adopted on Monday.
What is autonomy?
Autonomy for Jammu & Kashmir implies restoration of Article 370 in its original form.
What is Article 370?
This is a temporary article enshrined in the Constitution of India, which can be abrogated only through a mandate from the Constituent Assembly of the state. It took birth from the norms of the Instrument of Accession signed between Maharaja Hari Singh and Lord Louis Mountbatten, the first governor-general of free India. The instrument concedes only three subjects -- defence, foreign affairs and communications -- to the Government of India, while retaining all others as per the Delhi Agreement.
What is the Delhi Agreement?
After the Jammu and Kashmir Constituent Assembly took several important decisions, it had to receive the concurrence of the Government of India. Accordingly, representatives of both sides met and arrived at an agreement later known as the 'Delhi Agreement, 1952'.
What is the SAC report?
It is the State Autonomy Committee report, prepared by a committee headed by Housing Minister Ghulam Mohi-ud-Din Shah. It recommended that the state be restored to its pre-1953 status and all subjects of governance, except defence, foreign affairs, currency and communication. It was tabled in the state assembly by Chief Minister Farooq Abdullah in April last year. It has recommended reverting to the Delhi Agreement.
What are the main features of the Delhi Agreement, 1952?
The salient features are:
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