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Article 370 used as shield to stop legislations from reaching Jammu & Kashmir: BJP

Tuesday, 3 December 2013 - 7:17pm IST | Place: New Delhi | Agency: PTI

BJP today hit out at those targeting its prime Ministerial candidate Narendra Modi on his remarks on Article 370 and emphasised that no special Constitutional provisions are needed for Jammu and Kashmir.

"This debate on Article 370 subsequent to Modi raising it in the Jammu rally revealed what people of Jammu and Kashmir are missing out on. This Article has been used as a shield to stop many of those great legislations which have been passed in the country from reaching J&K," BJP spokesperson Nirmala Sitharaman said.

Elaborating on the issue, she said no elections to local bodies have been held in the state in four years, and sought to know why the 73rd and 74th Amendments (for urban and rural local bodies) have not been implemented in Jammu and Kashmir.

"For all this, can the Congress tell us, the amendment which Indira Gandhi brought to the Preamble of the Constitution- Secular, Socialist, Republic- that is what is not implemented in J&K. Why should J&K be excluded? Even the unanimous resolution passed in 1994 reiterated J&K as an integral part of India," Sitharaman said.

BJP claimed that any law passed by Parliament which benefits the rest of the country should benefit J&K too.

"So using this Article, if there is a filtering out- Delimitation Act is not implemented there... is it fair? Sitharaman asked.

She said Modi's intention of saying that was to highlight that the article has been used by a small, privileged and influential section of Jammu and Kashmir, to filter out several progressive legislations intended to empower citizens.

"It may be time now for Congress Party, National Conference and Omar Abdullah to explain and answer questions of how they have denied the people of Jammu and Kashmir – women, SC, ST and OBC in particular - their due rights." She maintained that the much-touted Right to Information Act has been modified and diluted under the last three chief ministers of J&K. 

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