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prabhakar sinha

The RSS has been deliberately creating a false impression that Kashmir was unduly and unnecessarily favoured with a special status under Art.370 and a ban on purchase of land under Art. 35 A.It has been concealing the fact that special provision was also made for several other states .In addition to the special provision for J &K under under Art.370 , special provision was made for Maharashtra under Art.371 for Nagaland under Art.371A ,for Assam under Art.371B , for Manipur under Art.371C ,for Andhra Pradesh under Art.371D & E and for Sikkim under Art.371 F .Art.371F for Sikkim was adopted in 1975 when Sikkim became part of India .The special provisions were made for states to address some peculiar problems existing at the time .Since Kashmir was not part of British India and its ruler Hari Singh had the option to join either India or Pakistan , its problem was more complicated .It was also complicated because Hari Singh , the Hindu ruler , wanted to join Pakistan but his Muslim subjects ( forming the majority ) led by Sheikh Abdulla wanted to join India .


The attack sponsored by Pakistan forced Hari Singh to accede to India on certain terms and condition.Fearful of what may happen to them later , some provisions were made to take care of their concerns. Art.35A was incorporated in 1954 to allay their fear that they may be reduced to a minority in their own state and may even be divested of their sources of livelihood .The RSS has been frightening the 79.8 % Hindus of India with the laughable prospect of 14. 2 % Muslims reducing them to a minority .They have been exhorting Hindu women to produce at least four children to stave off this imaginary calamity , but refuse to appreciate the Kashmiri Muslims’ genuine anxiety that they may be reduced to a minority in their own state by the influx of a large number of outsiders to their beautiful land . This anxiety is natural and is shared by several other states of the North East and is not a Kashmiris’ bogey .

Article 371 A states that no act of Parliament shall apply to the state of Nagaland in respect of the religious or social practices of the Nagas , its customary law and procedure , administration of civil and criminal justice involving decisions according to Naga customary law and ownership and transfer of land and its resources .Any act of Parliament on these subjects can apply to Nagaland only after the state Assembly passes a resolution to do so.A similar provision exists under Art.371 G for Mizoram also ..Kashmir is not alone in s pecial provisions made for it .

It is clear that a common civil code in Nagaland and Mizoram with the rest of India is not possible so long as Art. 371 A and Art.371G exist if the State Assembly does not pass a resolution in its favour .Surprisingly , even criminal law of India cannot be applied there if they are in conflict with Naga’s customary law. Its land and ‘ resources’ cannot be owned or transferred by an act of Parliament without a resolution of the State Assembly supporting it .

But while Art.370 has been targeted from 1950s and Art.35A from a later date , the other similar Articles of the constitutions granting special protection to other States were not even mentioned in a whisper by the Sanghis . Most amazing is the silence of the BJP   on Nagaland , which has been engaged  in an armed struggle for independence from 1950s  . Reportedly , Modi government has agreed to allow Nagaland to have the following :

1.A separate constitution for Nagaland 2.A separate flag 3.Separate Passport 4.Permanent UN Representative 5.Joint Foreign Affair 6.Joint Defence 7.Right to use Naga currency .8.Pan Naga government to cover all Naga inhabited areas .

The National Herald ( Web Desk ,13 July ,2019 ) had published this report based on a report of Imphal Times .It is too fantastic to be believed , but it has not been contradicted and the secret ongoing negotuation with the Nagas has been confirmed by R N Ravi , the Governor of Nagaland and one of the interlocutors. In contrast to what Modi goverment has done to Art.370 , RN Ravi has assured the Nagas that Art.371A is ‘a sacred commitment to the people of Nagaland ‘.

Thus , the Modi government has been following different standards in respect of Nagaland and J& K. Not surprisingly , the RSS and its creature the Jan Sangh had been aggressively pursuing its Kashmir agenda of doing away with its special status under Art.370 from the 1950s but maintaining silence on Nagaland .They have been opposing special provision for Kashmir under Art.370 but not the special provision for Nagaland under Art.371A.In fact , there was more compulsion for Art.370 than for Art.371A and the other Articles making special provisions for the other states .J &K was a princely state , which was not part of British India , and it acceded to India on certain terms and condition.Art.370 is the condition on which J & K acceded to India .Nagaland was part of British India as were the other states for which special provisions were made in the constitution( under Art.371A,371B, Art.371C and Art.371D & E ) Sikkim , too, was not part of India and it became part of India in 1975 . Special provisions were made for it under Art.371 F. The special provisions were made for the states to address problems peculiar to them at the time in the hope that in course of time they would become superfluous and redundant and disappear without coercion (as provided for in the constitution). The envisaged changes did not happen in Kashmir because of the successive governments of India’s failure to take appropriate steps for the required changes to happen .Instead of making a sincere effort to find a solution ,Modi government has chosen to suppress the Kashmiris with the use of the mighty armed forces . A BJP government could afford flexibility and generosity the UPA could not afford primarily due to BJP’s attck . But the BJP ‘s DNA did not allow it .

  Kashmir has been  on the top of  Sangh's agenda primarily because of its Muslim population .The Sangh 's hatred and hostility to Muslims is genetic .It has been manifesting itself through out its life.Golwarkar had gone to the extent of saying " Hindus, do not waste your energy fighting the British .Save it to fight the internal enemies that are the Muslims ,  Christians and the Communists." Balraj Madhok , who was the President of the Jan Sangh during the 1960s  (which is now the BJP ) , hailed from Jammu and was an old RSS man .He was also very active during the 1950s and was reportedly forced to leave Kashmir valley by Sheikh Abdulla.Shyama Prasad Mukherji , who felt cosy with the British and opposed the 1942 movement , also had Kashmir on the top of his agenda for the same reason .Following the scrapping of Art.370 .the Sanghis have been celebrating it as the realisation of S.P.Mukherjee's dream .It has been reported that Sushma Swaraj said before her death that her dream had  been fulfilled .The scrapping of Art.370 is the fulfilment of the Sangh's horrendous dream and beginning of the Kasmiris' horrifying nightmare. 

Art.35A had  assumed an extraordinary priority during  the  last one year or more .The people who do not cross even the boundary of their towns could be heard angrily  complaining against restriction on the outsiders buying property in Kashmir .They were no less angry about restriction on the  outsiders  settling there or Kashmiri women's children not inheriting property if they married a non - Kashmiri.They  are the gullible innocent victims of a concerted propaganda blitz launched for quite some time  . The campaign had  been launched to create a frenzy in favour of the steps just taken .  However the scrapping of Art.35A is a recipe for the pauperisation of the common Kashmiris .Their main source of livelihood has been catering to the tourists of different income groups .Now,  tourism business is bound to be taken over by the predatory  businessmen from outside.The locals may serve as their employees but cannot compete with them  in the business .Even the militants never targeted the tourists lest they drive them away from Kashmir and starve   their own brethren. Modi's predatory brigade , which is  bound to descend on Kashmir like famished vultures , would have no such consideration  and feed on the helpless Kashmiris .They have done the same to the people whereever they have gone :Chhattisgarh, Odisha , Tamil Nadu etc. But if that happens and the locals are driven out of business and driven to starvation , the innocent tourists may be targeted by the militants and tourism may breathe its last as business .India's paradise may turn into a death trap thanks to Sangh's hatred for the Muslims and Modi's cronies' insatiable lust for wealth beyond any limit .
  • Nothing should be misunderstood as my objection to any concession made to the Nagas or any other people if it brings peace and prosperity to them .

& .Refence to the special privisions for the other states made in the constitution has been made only to counter the false propaganda that Kashmir has been singled out for special provisions.

★ A restriction on the outsiders buying land also exists in several states including Nagaland, Mizoram and many others .

■The reference to Nagaland has been made only to show the contrast between the approach to Nagaland and J & K.

9 August ,2019

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