High Court seeks J&K Governer’s response on plea challenging reservation to people living near the International Border

Srinagar: The High Court in Srinagar has directed the Governor’s administration to submit a response on granting reservation to people living near the International Border (IB) in the Jammu region after National Conference (NC) challenged the same.

A Bench headed by Justice Tashi Rabstan on Thursday directed the authorities to file a response by July 10, while hearing a NC petition that sought directions to declare the J&K Reservation (Amendment) Ordinance-2019 and Constitution (Application to Jammu & Kashmir) Amendment Order-2019 as “unconstitutional.”

It was on the approval of the Union Cabinet, the Cabinet Secretary had on February 28 “approved a proposal of the J&K Government regarding amendment to the Constitution (Application to Jammu & Kashmir) Order, 1954, by way of Constitution (Application to Jammu & Kashmir) Order-2019 under which the provisions 77th and 103rd Constitutional amendment, which now forms part of the Indian Constitution, were applied to the state.”

Subsequently, by issuing the J&K Reservation (Amendment) Ordinance, the J&K Government had approved reservation benefits to people living along the IB in the State.

NC general secretary Ali Sagar, in his petition, argued that the order was “unconstitutional” because the Constitution of India “does not apply to the state of J&K on its own force.”

“It applies to the state by virtue of Article 370 of the Constitution of India, which provides a mechanism for an application of the Constitution to the State, requiring a “consultation or a concurrence” of the State government. Thus any presidential order which applies any part of the Constitution to the state requires the mandatory consultation or concurrence of the state government, meaning the Sadar-i-Riyasat, acting upon the advice of the Council of Ministers,” said the NC petition.
(The Hindu)

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