Srinagar, Dec 29: Jammu & Kashmir High Court released a landmark judgment allowing the state government to reclaim its own flag and constitutional posts like President and Prime Minister. The bench led by Justice Hasnain Masoodi upheld the provisions of Article 370 of Indian constitution which allows the state to maintain its uniqueness by adhering to its separate constitution, flag and penal code. Also Read - Foreign Delegation to Visit Jammu And Kashmir Today To Assess Development
Article 370 of the Indian Constitution could not be abrogated or amended…The state had no power to replace the post of Sadr-e-Riyasat (President) with Governor in 1965,” the bench observed. In 1965, the the then state government led by Ghulam Mohammad Sadiq replaced the post of Sadre-e-Riyasat and Prime Minister with a Centre-appointed Governor and Chief Minister respectively. (ALSO READ: Jammu and Kashmir Government to hoist state flag on buildings of constitutional authorities) Also Read - 'Yeh Ladki Pagal Hai'! Shehnaaz Gill, Badshah Share First Look From Their Upcoming Music Video
The appointed President of the state will not be chosen by the Centre as practiced in other states. Instead, the Sadr-e-Riyasat will be chosen by the elected members of the assembly. Also Read - Family of 3 Dies of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning from Room Heater in J&K's Baramulla
High Court has also the mandatory hoisting of separate state flag in all government buildings and premises in order to adhere to the provisions listed down in J&K Prevention of Insult to State Honour Act, 1979.
Independent J & K MLA Engineer Rashid has promised to raise the issue in J & K Assembly and force the government to “rectify the errors” as highlighted by the High Court. “I will introduce a bill in the Assembly to take quick measures to rectify the errors,” he said.
Meanwhile, mainstream regional parties National Conference and ruling PDP have welcomed the High Court’s order. However, they have remained tight-lipped on whether the posts of chief minister and governor be replaced by Prime Minister and President.
“This flag is our identity and that has to be respected and maintained at all costs. As we respect the National Flag we respect the State Flag, what HC has said is all as per provisions of J&K constitution,” said Devendra Rana, NC spokesperson.