Repeal special status for J&K, says Advani

New Delhi:  BJP leader L.K. Advani Sunday said that Article 370, that gives a special status to Jammu and Kashmir, should be repealed if the country has to have one constitution instead of one for that state and another for the country.

“The country awaits the day when Article 370 would be repealed and the two constitutions would become one,” Advani wrote in his blog on the 60th death anniversary of Shyama Prasad Mookerjee, the founder of the erstwhile Jana Sangh.

Mookerjee had opposed the Indian National Congress’s decision to grant Kashmir a special status with its own flag and its own prime minister.

Recalling the suspicious circumstance in which Mookarjee died while in the detention of J&K Police June 23, 1953, Advani wrote in his blog ‘Independent India’s First Martyr for National Integration’ that besides the abolition of the permit system for entering J&K, “two prime ministers became one, two apex courts became one, two election authorities became one, two principal auditors became one… all because of Dr. Shyama Prasad’s sacrifice.”

Advani recalled the first session of the Bharatiya Jana Sangh at Kanpur where Mookerjee gave the slogan “Ek desh mein do pradhan, do nishan, do vidhan, nahin chalenge (in one country there cannot be two chiefs, two flags and two constitutions).”

About Mookerjee’s martyrdom, Advani wrote: “Until this time, neither the Supreme Court, nor the Election Commission, nor the Comptroller and Auditor General had any jurisdiction over Jammu and Kashmir. The authority of these three constitutional bodies was extended to the state.”

“Till then, the chief minister of the state was called the prime minister, and the head of state the sadar-e-riyasat. Neither the president nor the prime minister of the union had authority over the state.”

Mookerji’s martyrdom brought about a change. In the state, the prime minister became chief minister, sadar-e-riyasat became governor and the president and the prime minister’s formal authority got extended to the state.


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