‘To our sisters and brothers in J&K’: Modi calls SC verdict on abrogation of Article 370 ‘historic’

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi

The Supreme Court’s decision Monday to uphold the abrogation of Article 370, which gave special status to Jammu and Kashmir, is a testament to the collective resolve to build a stronger, more united India, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said.

“… it is a resounding declaration of hope, progress and unity for our sisters and brothers in Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh. The Court, in its profound wisdom, has fortified the very essence of unity that we, as Indians, hold dear and cherish above all else,” the Prime Minister wrote in a message on X.

Modi assured the “resilient people of Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh” that his government’s commitment to fulfilling their dreams remained unwavering.

“We are determined to ensure that the fruits of progress not only reach you but also extend their benefits to the most vulnerable and marginalised sections of our society who suffered due to Article 370,” he said.

He added that the top court’s verdict was not just a legal judgment, but “a beacon of hope, a promise of a brighter future and a testament to our collective resolve to build a stronger, more united India”.

In a unanimous decision Monday, a five-judge Constitution bench headed by Chief Justice D.Y. Chandrachud upheld the 2019 abrogation of the constitutional schemes that provided special status to the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir when it was annexed to the Union of India in 1947.

Chief Justice Chandrachud said Article 370 of the Constitution was a temporary provision and that the President had the power to declare it inoperational.

“… all provisions of the Indian Constitution can be applied to J&K,” CJI Chandrachud said.

The Supreme Court was hearing petitions challenging a series of legislative and executive orders to scrap the special status of Jammu and Kashmir and split it into two Union Territories – J&K and Ladakh. J&K has not had an elected assembly since then.

The court, however, has directed that Jammu and Kashmir’s statehood be restored “at the earliest” and elections to the assembly be held by 30 September next year.

Union Home Minister Amit Shah also welcomed the Supreme Court’s decision, saying Modi’s “visionary decision” to abrogate Article 370 had seen “peace and normalcy” return to Jammu and Kashmir.

“Growth and development have brought new meaning to human life in the valley once torn by violence. Prosperity in the tourism and agriculture sectors has raised the income levels of the residents of both Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh,” Shah said in a post on X.

In another post, he also said that the “rights of the poor and deprived have been restored” in the erstwhile state after the revocation of Article 370, adding that separatism and stone-pelting were now things of the past.

“The entire region now echoes with melodious music and cultural tourism. The bonds of unity have strengthened, and integrity with Bharat stands reinforced. It is once again the Jammu, Kashmir, and Ladakh that always belonged to our nation and will continue to be so,” Shah wrote. The Home Minister also said the Centre was committed to “establishing lasting peace in J&K and Ladakh and the all-around development of the region”.

“Whether it is boosting the local economy with new incentives, building state-of-the-art educational infrastructure, or empowering the poor with welfare benefits, we will continue to exert all our might for the region,” he wrote.

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