United Front

United Front

Contrary to myths and perceptions trotted out by vested interests, support for keeping Article 35 A and not abrogating it is emerging from all regions and quarters of Jammu and Kashmir. This debunks a certain narrative which claims that resistance to scrapping of the said Article is only restricted to Kashmir. Support for maintaining Article 35 A and resistance against scrapping it has emerged from Ladakh , Jammu, Kishtwar Poonch, and so on. It also cuts across communities in the Jammu and Kashmir region. As is well known by now, Article 35 accords permanent residency rights to the residents of Jammu and Kashmir from which flow other provisions which protect the character, rights and identity of the peoples constituting the firmament of Jammu and Kashmir. Attempts to abrogate it , which have emerged in the public domain, constitute attempts to alter the character, nature and identity of the region- all motivated by cynical and noxious politics. One argument that has been trotted out is that it only the people of the Kashmir valley that are resisting the abrogation of the article because of special interests and privileges. Given that support for keeping the Article is emerging from across Jammu and Kashmir and cross cuts communities, the mythology around Article 35 A stands comprehensively debunked. Jammu and Kashmir has a distinctive character, nature and identity which the provisions of the said article and corollaries flowing from it protects. If Article 35 is abrogated, it will alter the demographics of Jammu and Kashmir and the ideational and identity premises undergirded will be decimated. Our identity will be swamped; so will our economy and political economy. Attempts to abrogate the said article will affect us individually and collectively. It then becomes incumbent on us- as individuals and as a composite society- engage in attempts(politico-legal) to protect Article 35 A and maintain its sanctity. The ideational super and sub-structure of Jammu and Kashmir is under threat and assault. It then is time for the residents of the region to set aside their differences and present a united front against these assaults and conspiracies. The support proffered by people from diverse regions of Jammu and Kashmir is a good start and beginning. The need of the hour is to crystallize this support and make it more coherent and potent. It is with this and a united front and face that nefarious designs on our character and identity can be pre-empted and prevented.

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