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CPI(M) warns against attempts to scrap Article 35-A

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Jammu, Aug 05: The Jammu and Kashmir unit of the CPI(M) today warned against attempts to tinker with Article 35-A and urged the Centre to file a counter-affidavit in the Supreme Court to defend the constitutional provision in the "larger national interest".

Article 35-A, incorporated in the Constitution by a 1954 Presidential Order, confers special status to permanent residents of Jammu and Kashmir.

The apex court is scheduled to hear a bunch of petitions challenging the validity of the constitutional provision tomorrow.

"Any attempt to tinker with Article 35-A will have disastrous and catastrophic results. The Centre must file a strong counter affidavit in the apex court to defend the constitutional provision in the larger national interest," CPI(M) regional secretary Sham Prasad Kesar said in a statement.

Addressing a party meeting, Kesar said that any attempt to dilute the provision would endanger the relationship of the state with the Indian Union.

"Keeping in view the sensitivities of Jammu and Kashmir, it becomes imperative for the political leadership of the country to exhibit maturity and ensure that the already tense situation in the state is not allowed to be raked up," he said.

The CPI(M) leader alleged that the RSS-BJP is bent on diluting the "unique and distinct" identity of the state.

"Efforts need to be accelerated to unite the democratic forces to put up a cohesive struggle against the move to dilute the distinct identity of the state," he said, adding there is a need to make the people of Jammu and Ladakh regions aware that abolition of Article 35-A is harmful to the state.

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