New Delhi: Following the Supreme Court’s verdict directing authorities in Jammu and Kashmir to restore internet services, senior Congress leader P Chidambaram Friday afternoon responded to it by putting forth his demand- that former Governor of the Valley, Satyapal Malik, “should own responsibility” and resign from his position as Goa, Governor.
“The Supreme Court order denies the unconstitutional and arrogant stance of the central government and the Jammu and Kashmir administration. In Jammu and Kashmir the entire team that designs and executes the plan should be changed, a new group of administrators respecting the Constitution should be appointed,” Chidambaram said in a tweet while snubbing the centre on the restrictions in the Valley.
The other tweet by the former home minister read, “The former Governor of J&K, Mr Satpal Malik, should own responsibility and resign from his present post of Governor, Goa.”
Earlier in the day, the Supreme Court in a landmark judgement said, “It is no doubt that freedom of speech is an essential tool in a democratic setup. Freedom of Internet access is a fundamental right under Article 19(1)(a) of free speech.” A three-judge bench comprising of Justices NV Ramana, R Subhash Reddy and BR Gavai said this while delivering the verdict on a batch of pleas, including that of senior Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad.
The top court further directed the Jammu and Kashmir government to review all restrictive orders within a week. Besides, it also noted that Section 144 can not be used to oppress voices of dissent. The Court said that indefinite internet ban by the State is not permissible under our Constitution and it is an abuse of power”, advocate Sadan Farasat told reporters outside the top court.
Meanwhile, Chidambaram is currently out on the bail in the INX Media case. He was on August 21 arrested from his residence by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) officials in connection with a probe into granting of the Foreign Exchange Promotion Board (FIPB) approval to the INX Media when he was Finance Minister.