Article 370 hearings: Mehbooba Mufti invokes Ram & Raghuvansh, says J&K still has faith in SC

The PDP leader and former J&K CM said the petitions the apex court was hearing pertained not just to Kashmir, but to the people of India as a while

PDP chief and former Jammu & Kashmir chief minister Mehbooba Mufti (photo: IANS)
PDP chief and former Jammu & Kashmir chief minister Mehbooba Mufti (photo: IANS)


Speaking to the media on the lawns of the Supreme Court on 16 August, leader of the Jammu and Kashmir People's Democratic Party (PDP) and former chief minister Mehbooba Mufti invoked Lord Ram and the Raghu clan to say the promise made by Indians to Jammu & Kashmir natives in 1947 was on trial in the Supreme Court—in which, “fortunately”, they still have some faith.

The PDP leader said that the petitions on the abrogation of Article 370 that the Supreme Court was hearing pertained to the people of India, more than just the people of Kashmir.

“This country cannot be run on majoritarianism. This country will be run as per the Constitution,” she said, referring to the abrogation of Article 370 pertaining to the people of India and their promise, India's promise to the natives of Kashmir made in 1947.

“We know what has happened to institutions of the country," Mufti said, "Fortunately we still have some faith in the Supreme Court of this country."

“I am not talking about those who kill in the name of ‘Jai Shri Ram’ and lynch in the name of ‘Jai Shri Ram’," she continued. "I am talking about those of the majority community people who believe in ‘Ramchandra-ji’, his vachan (promise) that Raghukul reet sada chali aayi, pran jaye par vachan na jaye (the custom of the Raghukal has ever been that better one should lose one's life than break one's word) so I think that vachan is on trial today in the Supreme Court,” the PDP leader said.

In Hindu mythology, the Raghu clan, to which Lord Ram belonged, believed in the principle that you must never break your promise even if you have to lose your life keeping it.

The PDP leader said it is for the top court and the Indian citizens to see whether the country will be run according to the Constitution or “as per the divisive agenda of a particular party".

She said she was satisfied that the apex court did not accept the Centre’s contention that the situation has improved in the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir after the abrogation of the provisions of Article 370. Mufti claimed that in the last five years, many Kashmiri Pandits have been forced to leave the Valley.

Mufti also noted that the central government has claimed it ended militancy in Kashmir. This, she said, has been done by the Army. In the name of ending militancy, the Centre has destroyed Jammu and Kashmir, she alleged. When there was an attack on Jammu and Kashmir in 1947 by Pakistan, it was its unarmed natives who fought the aggressors with the help of the Indian Army, added Mufti.

Mufti visited the top court while a five-judge bench headed by Chief Justice DY Chandrachud was hearing arguments by senior advocate Rajeev Dhavan on behalf of the Jammu and Kashmir People’s Conference.

On August 2, former chief minister Omar Abdullah had visited the top court too and said he expected justice from it, like any other Indian citizen.

The apex court had that day commenced hearing the pleas challenging the abrogation of Article 370, which bestowed special status on the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir.

The Centre had on 5 August 2019 come out with the notification repealing Article 370, stripping the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir of its special status.

Several petitions challenging the abrogation of the provisions of Article 370 and the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Act, 2019—which split the erstwhile state into two union territories, Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh—were referred to a Constitution bench in 2019. Those are finally being taken up now. 

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