Srinagar, August 18 (KMS): In occupied Kashmir, the Kashmir Center for Social and Development Studies (KCSDS) staged a silent sit-in protest in Srinagar against India’s plans to dilute Article 35A of Indian Constitution to change the Muslim majority of the territory into a minority.
The protesters from different walks of life including lawyers, journalists, businessmen, doctors and teachers assembled at Pratap Park in Srinagar. They were carrying placards that highlighted the promises made by various Indian leaders. Some of the placards read, “India learn to keep promise”, “Liars make the best promise”, “They made many promises but never kept one”, “A country that does not keep promises is a banana republic” and “Shame on broken promises”.
Addressing the media at the sit-in, the KCSDS Chairperson, Hameeda Nayeem, said safeguarding the Article 35A is vital because it protects constitution of Jammu and Kashmir and various other laws of the territory. “We hope there is a larger unity among people of Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh over this issue. India should desist from playing with fire by abrogating this Article,” she said.
“We are trying our best to contact civil society members from various parts of India but at the moment we are mobilising people in Kashmir. This will create pressure on the authorities,” she said.
Noted writer Majid Zargar expressed serious concern if the article 35A was tempered with through judicial means. He said that majority of the laws belonged to Kashmir as they were created in 1927 and 1932 when Jammu and Kashmir was ruled by Maharaja. The then government of India had said we will provide Kashmir with a special status to save its identity and culture and thus this Article was brought in through Presidential order. If this Article is removed anyone from India can purchase property, and most importantly majority population will turn into minority just like in Palestine,” he said.
“Indian rulers want to create Palestine-like situation where people become homeless in their own home. This is a conspiracy against Kashmir,” he added.
Noted academic and political analyst, Sideeq Wahid, who has written several articles on the issue said that Article 35A was already part of law and it could not be tampered with. He said that all-out efforts should be made to oppose abrogation of Article 35A in occupied Kashmir.