In a stern warning to the Centre, Peoples Democratic Party chief Mehbooba Mufti on Saturday said that the relationship between the Union of India and Jammu and Kashmir would be over if the government decides to revoke Article 370 of the Constitution.
“If you break the bridge (Article 370), then you will have to renegotiate the relationship between India and Jammu and Kashmir. There will be new terms and conditions, there will be fresh negotiations. Like 1947, you will have to decide on what basis do you plan to take over a Muslim-dominated state? You had given us the status under the law. If you finish it, we will have to think about the new conditions and whether we would even want to stay with you,” the former chief minister was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.
#WATCH Mehbooba Mufti: If you break that bridge (Art 370)…then you will have to renegotiate relationship b/w India-Jammu&Kashmir, there will be new conditions…A Muslim majority state, would it even want to stay with you?…If you scrap 370, your relation with J&K will be over pic.twitter.com/HlAMZh3KcC
— ANI (@ANI) March 30, 2019
Included in the Constitution on October 17, 1949, Article 370 exempts J&K from the Indian Constitution (except Article 1 and Article 370 itself) and permits the state to draft its own Constitution. It restricts Parliament’s legislative powers in respect of J&K.
Hitting out at Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley for questioning the validity of the special status, Mufti said, “Arun Jaitley must think about this. If you finish Article 370, your relation with Jammu and Kashmir will be over.”
On Friday, National Conference leader Omar Abdullah had cautioned the BJP and its leadership against raising questions against the validity of Article 370. Abdullah said that if Article 370 is to be debated afresh, “then I’m sorry, but questions will be raised on Accession as well. Accession was done on these terms and conditions”.