Indian SC judge brings submission up in Article 370 case

ISLAMABAD, Dec 12 (APP): Judge of Indian Supreme Court, Surya Kant mentioned referendum while seeking to know how the Indian government could have ascertained will of the people of Kashmir in the absence of an elected assembly, in Indian Occupied Kashmir.

Surya Kant made the remarks while hearing a host of petitions challenging the validity of the Indian government’s actions of stripping Kashmir of its special status and dividing it into two union territories as part of a five-judge bench led by NV Ramana, Kashmir Media Service reported.

He also raised the point that if the decision rested with people then will it be a case of referendum, concurrence or consultation.

“Who’s the competent authority? How is it to be done? Through a referendum? through elected representatives? How?,” Kant asked senior advocate, Raju Ramachandran when the latter argued that the Indian government could not have unilaterally changed the status of Kashmir without taking into consideration the will of the Kashmiri people.

Ramachandran, who is appearing for former bureaucrat, Shah Faesal and activist, Shehla Rasheed, said, “There are no elected representatives.”

The territory was under President’s Rule when its special status was scrapped, he said. “The people have been sidelined and their Constitution violated,” he added.

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