BJP softens, Modi wants Article 370 to be debated

  • Tarun Upadhyay, Hindustan Times, Jammu
  • Updated: Dec 02, 2013 00:33 IST

In what appear to be softening of the BJP's demand for scrapping Article 370 that gives special status to Jammu and Kashmir, its PM candidate Narendra Modi has said the constitutional provision should be debated and people's verdict accepted.

It should be debated if the constitution provision had benefitted people or was being used as a shield by the corrupt, Modi said at a well-attended rally here on Sunday.

The BJP has always maintained that Article 370, which among other things allows the border state a separate constitution, is a hurdle in Jammu and Kashmir's integration with the country and encourages separatism.

"There should be a debate if the state has benefited from Article 370," said Modi, virtually kick-starting the campaign for next year's Lok Sabha election.

Similar views were echoed by his party chief Rajnath Singh who told the 'Lalkar' rally that if proved to be beneficial, his party would stand by the constitutional provision.

The concept of separate state bred separatism but the BJP wanted to make J&K a super state not a separate state, Modi said.

"Some people have used secularism as a herbal pill to absolve themselves of the sins of corruption and misgovernance. And in J-K, Article 370 is another herbal pill to shield them from accountability," he said.

Chief minister Omar Abdullah reacted sharply to Modi's speech. "I challenge him or any of his minions to reproduce verbatim the section of Art 370 that determines the J&K state subject law," Abdullah tweeted.

"If Omar (Abdullah) married outside Kashmir, his rights of being a citizen remain whereas his sister Sara loses the right for the same. Is this not discrimination against the women in the state?" he said. Abdullah's sister Sara is married to union minister Sachin Pilot, who is not from Jammu and Kashmir.

Modi was referring to a now-defunct law that said a woman would cease to be a Jammu and Kashmir subject on marrying a person from outside the state. The law was struck down by the high court in 2001 though it is silent on the rights of children born of such a marriage.

The BJP would carry forward the principles of "Insaniyat (humanity), Jamhuriyat (democracy) and Kashmiriyat (composite secular Kashmiri culture)" in the state as envisioned by former PM Atal Behari Vajpayee, he said.

From Around the Web
Sponsored by Revcontent

also read

The brands that shaped pre-reforms India still live on in our national memory
Show comments

Steps to disable Ad Blocker on your browser


In order to serve content on our website, we rely on advertising revenue which helps us to ensure that we continue to serve high quality unbiased journalism. From our end, we will aim to show clean and unobtrusive ads to provide you with a great browsing experience.

Request to please follow the steps below and once done, please refresh your page.


For Chrome and Ad BlockPlus users

1.Press the ‘ABP’ icon in your toolbar at top right of this page

2. Click on ‘Enabled on this site’; this should now change to ‘Disabled on this site’


chrome



For Chrome and Ad Block users

1.Press the ‘AdBlock’ icon in your toolbar

2.Select the option ‘Don’t run on pages on this domain’ and then click ‘exclude’ on the pop up


chrome

Steps to disable Ad Blocker on your browser


In order to serve content on our website, we rely on advertising revenue which helps us to ensure that we continue to serve high quality unbiased journalism. From our end, we will aim to show clean and unobtrusive ads to provide you with a great browsing experience.

Request to please follow the steps below and once done, please refresh your page.


For Mozilla and AdBlock Plus (ABP) users

1.Press the ‘ABP’ icon in your toolbar

2.Select the option ‘Disable on hindustantimes.com’


chrome

Steps to disable Ad Blocker on your browser


In order to serve content on our website, we rely on advertising revenue which helps us to ensure that we continue to serve high quality unbiased journalism. From our end, we will aim to show clean and unobtrusive ads to provide you with a great browsing experience.

Request to please follow the steps below and once done, please refresh your page.


For Internet Explorer and AdBlock Plus users

1.Press the ‘AdBlock Plus’ icon in your status bar at the bottom of the screen

2.Select the option ‘Disable on hindustantimes.com’


chrome

Steps to disable Ad Blocker on your browser


In order to serve content on our website, we rely on advertising revenue which helps us to ensure that we continue to serve high quality unbiased journalism. From our end, we will aim to show clean and unobtrusive ads to provide you with a great browsing experience.

Request to please follow the steps below and once done, please refresh your page.


For Safari and AdBlock users

1.Press the ‘AdBlock’ icon in your toolbar

2.Select the option ‘Don't run pages on this domain’ and then click 'exclude'


chrome