SC likely to hear next month pleas related to Article 370

Published on Sep 23, 2022 01:02 PM IST

Many petitions have also challenged the Jammu and Kashmir State Reorganization Act for the bifurcation of J&K into two Union Territories.

The Supreme Court. (ANI)
The Supreme Court. (ANI)

A constitution bench of the Supreme Court is likely to hear next month a clutch of petitions related to Article 370 of the Constitution, which conferred semi-autonomous status on Jammu & Kashmir (J&K) before it was nullified in August 2019. On Friday, Chief Justice of India (CJI) Uday Umesh Lalit said the petitions will be listed after the Dussehra vacation.

“We will certainly list that...it will be listed after Dussehra break,” justice Lalit replied when senior advocate Prashantho Sen requested the CJI to list the matter. The court will be closed for Dussehra from October 3 to 10.

The petitions were last listed in March 2020 when a five-judge bench declined to refer the matter to a larger bench. The reference was sought on the grounds that previous judgments of the court on the matter were conflicting with each other. The bench did not agree with this contention.

At that time, the bench noticed an older batch of petitions pending in the Supreme Court challenging the validity of Articles 370 and 35A, which accorded special status to J&K. It pointed out that all the matters relating to Article 370 should be preferably heard together.

National Conference lawmakers, former bureaucrats, and some organisations are among those who have challenged the nullification of Article 370. Some petitioners highlighted the Supreme Court’s 2018 ruling observing Article 370 had gained a status of permanence.

Many petitions have also challenged the Jammu and Kashmir State Reorganization Act for the bifurcation of J&K into two Union Territories.

On August 28, 2019, the Supreme Court issued notices on the pleas despite resistance from the central government, which argued that Article 370 had international and cross-border implications. The Centre also argued that it is a very sensitive matter and whatever happens in the country over it would be raked up at the United Nations. The court referred the matter to the five-judge constitution bench while issuing notices in 2019.

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