Abrogation of Article 370: Supreme Court to continue hearing for 7th day today

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Today, a Constitution bench of the Supreme Court will hear a batch of petitions challenging the abrogation of Article 370 for the 7th day. The bench comprises Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud, Justice Surya Kant, Justice Sanjiv Khanna, Justice BR Gavai, and Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul. So far, Senior Advocate Kapil Sibal, Senior Advocate Gopal Subramanian, and Senior Advocate Zaffar Ahmed Shah completed their arguments or contentions on behalf of the petitioners for the same. On August 16, 2023, Senior Advocate Dushyant Dave and Senior Advocate Rajeev Dhavan argued on the matter whereas SA Dushyant Dave continued today with his arguments. Yesterday, SA Dhavan presented his arguments first and concluded stating that “Argument made by the Union that this exercise in futility in going back…This argument must be rejected. Article 370 is a part of the basic structure as a substitute of the merger agreement… as an interpretation…Articles 3, 4, and 370 cannot be invoked during President rule at all since it requires the existence of the state legislature. How can a constitution disappear like this? J&K Reorganization Act is in violation of the process of Article 3. What was lost? The loss was of statehood by degrading it to a UT, abolition of concurrence provisions, and violation of residuary powers. It is pleaded to restore statehood to J&K, abrogate the president rule.” 

Further, SA Dave started the arguments by referring the Article 370 as ‘perhaps the most brilliant articulation of statesmanship on the part of the constitutional framers.’ He also presented a vivid picture of the era when Article 370 was created, “You are at a time when calls for the plebiscite are being raised in Kashmir. You are at a time when raiders are raiding in plain clothes and trying to take them away. You are at a time when Maharaja is uncertain whether he wants to join India or Pakistan. At a time like that, this was a brilliant compromise that was arrived at which led to producing the article which persuaded people of Jammu and Kashmir to accede to India.” Today, SA Dave will continue with his arguments before the Constitution bench.

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