SC Orders Review On Imposed Restrictions in J&K

A three-judge SC bench comprising Justices NV Ramana, R Subhash Reddy, and BR Gavai gave its verdict on pleas filed by Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad to challenge restrictions imposed in J&K. SC ordered the Jammu & Kashmir administration to review all restrictive orders within a week.

Crux of the Matter
  • The Supreme Court said that any order that has been passed to suspend internet services in J&K will be subject to judicial scrutiny.
  • SC ordered J&K administration to review all restrictive orders within a week and asked to put all orders in the public domain which can then be challenged in a court of law.
  • SC also said the suspension of the internet for an indefinite period is not permissible and Freedom of speech and expression under Article 19(1)(a) of the Constitution includes Right to Internet.
  • On the use of Section 144 in the state SC said, “It cannot be used as a tool to oppress difference of opinion.”
  • The government had justified restrictions saying that it was done as a preventive measure and due to which neither a single life was lost nor a single bullet fired.
  • Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad said, “the government had tried to mislead the people and this time the apex court did not come under any pressure.”

Article 370 of the Indian constitution gave special status to Jammu and Kashmir. The article was drafted in Part XXI of the Constitution: Temporary, Transitional and Special Provisions. The Constituent Assembly of Jammu and Kashmir, after its establishment, was empowered to recommend the articles of the Indian constitution that should be applied to the state or to abrogate the Article 370 altogether. This article, along with Article 35A, defined that the Jammu and Kashmir state’s residents live under a separate set of laws, including those related to citizenship, ownership of property, and fundamental rights, as compared to residents of other Indian states. More Info