The Union government Monday scrapped the special status granted to the state of J&K by modifying Article 370 of the Constitution and moved a separate bill to bifurcate the state into two separate union territories. Congress leader and the last Yuvraj of Jammu and Kashmir Dr Karan Singh’s speech in Parliament in 2016, on the state’s relationship with India, gives us insight into the ongoing Kashmir chaos.
Speaking his “heart-and-head” out in Rajya Sabha, Karan Singh, the son of Maharaja Hari Singh, the last ruler of J&K who acceded to the Union of India, said J&K was an extremely complex and complicated affair and there was no magic bullet that would solve it overnight. FOLLOW LIVE UPDATES HERE
“The day my father signed the Instrument of Accession, J&K became an integral part of India. On October 27, 1947, I was in the room; I was in the house when the Accession was signed. However, please remember something more, my father acceded for three subjects: Defence, Communication and Foreign Affairs. He signed the same Instrument of Accession that all the other Princely States signed. All the other States subsequently merged, but Jammu and Kashmir didn’t merge,” Singh, who became the first Governor of Jammu and Kashmir on March 30, 1965, had said.
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“Jammu and Kashmir’s relationship with the rest of India is guided by Article 370 and the State Constitution that I signed into law. Yes, it is an integral part of India, but we must realize that from the very beginning Jammu and Kashmir has been given a special position,” Singh said.
“But the fact of the matter is that there was the political Agreement in 1952, Sheikh Abdullah-Jawaharlal Agreement; there was the adoption of the State Constitution in 1957. On January 26, 1957, I signed that Constitution. Subsequently, there have been a plethora of Presidential Orders which have, gradually and gradually, applied increasingly in Entries from the Union List to the State List. So, this is a process that has been going on for a long time. Then, in 1975, there was another political Agreement between Sheikh Abdullah and Indira Gandhi and subsequently there have been many Commissions,” he said during a short discussion in Rajya Sabha.
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“There is still uncertainty with regard to the exact status of Jammu and Kashmir and its relationship with Indian history. It is an integral part of India; there is no doubt about that. But what exactly the relationship will be? In many federal countries, it varies. Even China has one State, two systems. For Hong Kong, they have a different system. So, integral part doesn’t necessarily mean that it will be exactly the same as anything else, and that is not what it is. So, this is an unresolved matter. The longer we keep it unresolved, the more confusion there will be,” the last Sadr-e-Riyasat of Jammu and Kashmir said.
Karan Singh concluded by saying, “And also, Jammu and Kashmir is a single State, yes. But, as it is mentioned by Shri Shamsher Singh Manhas and by other people, there are three regions: there is Jammu, there is Kashmir and there is Ladakh. There are these regions and they have their own problems and the youth in those regions have their own aspirations which will not necessarily coincide with each other. Therefore, I would submit that the point is well taken that where we have Jamuriat, Democracy, where we have Insaniyat, humanity and where we have kashmiriyat, let us have two more, Jammuiyat and Ladakhis. They are also parts of the State. They cannot be brushed aside.”