The National Conference has been rejected totally by the people of Jammu region, and it does not represent the ethos of the region. A clear evidence of this is the way the party was decimated in the previous elections of the state legislative assembly. The tally of the NC has reached an all-time low and it is odd to claim that it represents Jammu, BJP State Spokesman Arun Kumar Gupta said here on Sunday.
The claims made by NC Regional Chief Devinder Rana on Article 35-A are not true as the Jammu region does not support this provision at all. Rana’s claims with regard to this provision are totally misleading and spurious, Gupta asserted. In fact, the NC is afraid of this issue coming under scrutiny now and wants to shut debate among people, he added.
The issue is pending its disposal in the Supreme Court whether Article 35-A needs to be scrapped from the Constitution. Or not. That is the issue to be decided in the highest court of the land and will be properly scrutinised, he pointed out. When an issue of such a great sensitivity is in the court, to claim that Jammu supports this provision is misleading and false, Gupta added.
The claims of support for Article 35-A in the Jammu region are totally misplaced and the NC should observe the legal nicety of desisting from commenting on an issue with the Supreme Court. In fact, commenting on any issue before the courts and seeking to raise passions is flawed and not proper. The process of a matter being sub judice needs to be understood and respected, he said.
The BJP’s stance on Article 370 as also Article 35-A is very well-known among people, and does not need to be reiterated here. Rana claims that scrapping Article 35-A will render Article 370 hollow but a decision regarding it can come only from the apex court. A political party voicing apprehensions about it are out of place, Mr Gupta said.
He pointed out that the response of another NC legislator, Javed Rana, on the issue of Article 35-A appears far more mature, and balanced. Perhaps because Javed Rana has been a legislator for a longer period and understands the process of law-making better, Arun Gupta said. Javed Rana is reported to have said that Indian Parliament is competent to deal with the issue of Article 35-A.
Javed Rana has admitted on record that the process adopted for inserting Article 35-A in the Indian Constitution suffered from a procedural flaw. He had also said that an amendment (Article 35-A) cannot be effected in the Indian Constitution through the executive route. This has been a stance of the BJP all through these years that due process has not been followed and Article 370 gives no powers to President of India to amend the Constitution.
The two Ranas of the same party, National Conference, Devinder Rana and Javed Rana, are adopting opposite stances on Article 35-A. This shows that there is utter confusion in the NC regarding the issue and it is best left to the courts and legal minds. There should be no attempts to raise passions, and spread canards regarding this provision, Arun Gupta said.
Instead of making false claims regarding representing the masses of Jammu, Mr Devinder Rana will do better to learn more about Article 35-A, as also Article 370. In fact, it is his duty as state president of NC to spread correct information regarding these provisions among the legislators of his party, Mr Gupta said. There is no reason to avoid debate and spread falsehoods among masses on issues having wide ramifications, he added.