SRINAGAR: As the governor’s rule expires in Indian held Jammu and Kashmir after six months yesterday (Wednesday), President’s rule is set to be imposed in the state from today (Thursday, December 20).
The Centre recommended President’s rule after a report by Governor Satya Pal Malik, India Today reported on Tuesday. The Union Cabinet gave its go-ahead for President’s rule after Wednesday (December 19), the report said.
A communication from Governor’s office was sent to the central government and subsequently, it was moved to the Union Cabinet for its nod.
The official said President Ram Nath Kovind will have to issue a proclamation declaring that the powers of the legislature of the state shall be exercisable by or under the authority of the Parliament.
The state plunged into a political crisis in June this year after People’s Democratic Party (PDP) chief Mahbooba Mufti-led coalition government was reduced to a minority following withdrawal of support by the 25-member Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in the state.
Since the state has a separate Constitution, in such cases, six months of Governor’s rule is compulsory under Article 92 of the Jammu and Kashmir Constitution, under which all the legislative powers are vested with the Governor.
The Governor has to dissolve the Legislative Assembly after six months. The state then directly comes under President’s rule for another six months after which elections have to be held in the state.
In case the elections are not declared, President’s rule can be extended by another six months. No presidential proclamation shall, in any case, remain in force for more than three years except for the intervention of Election Commission of India which has to certify that the continuance in force of the proclamation is necessary on account of difficulties in holding general elections to the Legislative Assembly.
Malik on November 21 dissolved the 87-member state assembly after the PDP, supported by the Congress and their arch-rivals National Conference, had staked their claim to form the government.
Simultaneously, the two-member People’s Conference led by Sajjad Lone had also staked his claim to form a government with 25 members of the BJP and other 18 unknown members.
The Governor dissolved the assembly citing horse-trading and lack of stability to form a government as the reasons.
Meanwhile, complete shutdown is being observed in south Kashmir’s Pulwama district for the fifth consecutive day, today, against civilian killings by Indian troops in the town.
According to Kashmir Media Service (KMS), all shops and business establishments are closed while public transport is off the road in the town. The shutdown call was given by various civil society groups and traders’ federation of Pulwama.
The traders’ federation leaders told media that the shutdown will be observed till Friday. “A peaceful protest rally will also be taken out on Friday,” the federation members said.