Srinagar: Former Union minister and senior Congress leader Saifuddin Soz today called on Jammu and Kashmir Governor N N Vohra and discussed the concerns about Article 35A of the Constitution, which relates to special rights and privileges of the state’s permanent residents.
The meeting comes ahead of a Supreme Court hearing, scheduled for August 6, on petitions challenging the validity of Article 35A.
Article 35A, which was incorporated in the Constitution by a 1954 Presidential Order, accords special rights and privileges to the Jammu and Kashmir citizens and denies property rights to a woman who marries a person from outside the state.
“I stressed the fact that the people of the state can, under no circumstances, compromise their commitment for protection of the Article 35A, which confers special privileges to the people of the J-K state,” Soz said in a statement.
“I also stressed the fact that one way could be that the RSS sees reason to withdraw the case from the Supreme Court,” Soz said in a statement.
The main petition demanding scrapping of Article 35A was filed before the apex court in 2014 by an RSS-linked NGO ‘We the Citizens’.
The governor assured Soz that he (Vohra) would keep the concerned authorities at political and administrative levels informed of the developments and said that he was sure that serious note will be taken of people’s feelings.
Among other matters discussed with the governor, Soz also brought to Vohra’s notice the need for attention to the SKIMS hospital.
“SKIMS is in bad shape not because of administration and faculty, but due to extreme lack of resources, particularly for treatment of the cancer patients,” Soz said.
“The governor informed me that the meeting of the Governing Board will be held shortly and my memorandum suggesting improvements will be considered in that meeting, he said.