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J&K’s relation with India will be over if Article 370 is scrapped: Mehbooba Mufti

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 Srinagar, Mar 30: Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) President Mehbooba Mufti on Saturday said that the relationship between Jammu and Kashmir and New Delhi will be over if Article 370 is scrapped.

She was reacting to Finance Minister Arun Jaitley yesterday’s statements wherein he had advocated repeal of special status of Jammu and Kashmir.

“Jaitley must understand this. It is not an easy thing to say. If you scrap (Article) 370, your relation with J-K will be over,” Mehbooba told party workers at her residence here.

Jaitley had on Thursday advocated repeal of Jammu and Kashmir’s special status and said Article 35-A, which restricts non-permanent residents to buy immovable property in Jammu and Kashmir, is “constitutionally vulnerable” and also hampering economic development of the state.

Mehbooba said Article 370 was a bridge between the Union and the state and if the special provision of the Constitution was revoked, then New Delhi would have to “renegotiate” its relationship with Jammu and Kashmir.

“If you break that bridge (Art 370)…then you will have to renegotiate relationship between India and Jammu & Kashmir,” said Mehbooba.

The former chief minister also said in case Article 370 is revoked, Jammu and Kashmir will also have to rethink whether it wants to stay with India.

“Because if you have given us a special position in the Constitution of India and you break that position, then we will have to rethink whether we would even want to stay with you without conditions,” she said.

Earlier, National Conference leader Mohammad Abdullah Wani and Awami Insaf Party chief Ghulam Ahmad Sheikh Saloora joined the PDP, along with their supporters.

Wani and Saloora were welcomed into the party fold by Mehbooba and party patron Muzaffar Hussain Beigh.

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