Next big thing

09/08/2019

No matter what has happened to you in the past or what is going on in your life right now, it has no power to keep you from having an amazingly good future if you will walk by faith in God. President of India Ram Nath Kovind declared that all provisions of the Constitution shall now apply to the state of Jammu and Kashmir (J&K), thus nullifying Article 370 using the same article and ending the special autonomous status that the state had enjoyed since the promulgation of the Constitution. Under Article 370, J&K had its own constitution, with the President of India empowered to decide which provisions of the Indian Constitution would be applicable within the state but only with the assent of the state. The Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Bill 2019 bifurcates the state into the Union territories (UTs) of J&K, and of Ladakh. While the UT of J&K will have a legislature, the UT of Ladakh will be without one. While UTs have, in the past, been upgraded to states, never has a state been so downgraded, thus consummating the accession of J&K to India in a manner different to its inception.
Now the big thing to be done in Jammu and Kashmir is setting up of the Delimitation Commission, which was a long pending demand of the people of Jammu region as they felt discriminated with just 37 Assembly seats as against 46 of Kashmir. People were now confident that the Delimitation Commission set up by the Election Commission will do justice with Jammu region. The Delimitation Commission has to be set up by the Election Commission of India to finalize 90 Assembly constituencies in proposed Jammu and Kashmir Union Territory on which the election has to be held and give it time-frame by which it has to complete its task. There can be altogether separate Assembly constituencies with different boundaries as it will not be binding on the Delimitation Commission to stick to the segments, which existed in Jammu and Kashmir State Assembly and since the Commission could take time to draw boundaries and name 90 constituencies, holding elections to the Assembly might take time. Jammu and Kashmir Reorganization Bill which was approved by the Parliament also gives mandate to the Election Commission to carry out delimitation of the Assembly constituencies in Jammu and Kashmir Union Territory, which has been granted the Legislature while Ladakh Union Territory will be without the Legislature. Jammu and Kashmir Union Territory has been allocated 114 Assembly seats, 24 of which are reserved for Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK) and election will be held on 90 seats. In addition, the elected Government will have the powers to nominate two women to the Assembly, like the House that existed in the State of Jammu and Kashmir. The State Assembly had 111 seats of which 24 were reserved for PoK and election used to be held on 87 including 46 in Kashmir, 37 in Jammu and four in Ladakh. With Ladakh now getting separate Union Territory, the number of seats would have gone down to 83 but the Central Government has given 90-seat Assembly to UT of Jammu and Kashmir, an increase of seven seats. The delimitation of Assembly seats has become necessity as it would be treated as new Assembly altogether with reservation for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes. The Scheduled Castes enjoyed reservations in the State Assembly also where seven constituencies were reserved for them including Chhamb, Domana, RS Pura, Samba, Hiranagar, Chenani and Ramban while STs had been denied political reservations. Seats reserved for SCs had to be rotated after every two terms but in J&K State Assembly, four elections were held on the same seats without rotating them. The Delimitation Commission could now reserve seats in different areas for the SCs, they said.

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