The government of India has approved extension of two central constitutional amendments to Jammu and Kashmir on recommendations of the state’s governor for granting reservation in promotions and reservation for economically-weaker sections of the society.
The union cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has approved the proposal to extend constitution 77th amendment (reservation in promotion for the scheduled castes and scheduled tribes) and constitution 103rd amendment (reservation for economically-weaker sections of society) to J&K.
The concurrence for extending these amendments was given by the governor Satya Pal Malik, the government of India’s own nominee, after the state administrative council (SAC) approved the proposal earlier this month.
Under Article 370, the constitutional amendments can be extended to J&K only on concurrence of the state government.
Legal experts opine that concurrence for extending constitutional amendments can be given only by an elected government.
“Any constitutional amendment can be extended to the state on the recommendations of state government, which means an elected government,” they suggested.
This is the second time when significant constitutional amendments have been extended to the state in absence of an elected government.
In 1986, the president issued an executive order under Article 370, extending Article 249 to J&K which “empowers the parliament to legislate even on a matter in the State List on the strength of Rajya Sabha resolution”. Concurrence to the presidential order was given by then Centre’s own appointee, governor Jagmohan.
No amendment made in the constitution of India by the Parliament gets applied to J&K unless concurrence for the same is given by state government. All the constitutional amendments are extended to the state through Article 370 route.
The last constitutional amendment was extended to J&K in 2017 when PDP-BJP gave nod for extension of GST.
The union cabinet Thursday also approved Jammu and Kashmir Reservation Ordinance to grant reservation for the people living along the International Border in Jammu, Samba and Kathua districts of Jammu province.
The ordinance for the same is being issued under J&K constitution by the President as Parliament is not in session.
The powers of J&K legislature are presently vested with the Parliament. But the President can issue ordinance under section 91 of Jammu and Kashmir Constitution.