Even as the so-called Kashmir mainstream has launched a vicious campaign over the issue of Article 370, the Jammu intelligentsia is asserting and expressing its viewpoint in a candid manner.
Former President CCI Y V Sharma: The erstwhile State of J&K had certain privileges guaranteed under Art.370 and 35A of the Indian Constitution. They were introduced in the Indian constitution as temporary measures. But this temporariness prolonged so much that it became contentious. Many sections of the society like the West Pakistan Refugees and the Valmiki community were denied citizenship on one pretext or the other. Moreover, they created a sense of alienation despite accession of the State with the Country. Many central laws, which are beneficial for the masses could not be introduced on account of the existence of these articles.
These articles were abrogated on Aug 5.,2019 and the State was bifurcated in to two Union Territories viz Ladakh and J&K. It has provided benefit of citizenship not only to WP refugees and some other communities of the State but also to some of the non state subject public servants who had been serving in the State for long time and whose children were born and educated in the then state. It was of course a correct decision which was hailed throughout the country. Changes and transitional periods are definitely difficult. The Central authorities have assured time and again that full Statehood will be restored to J&K as soon as the situation normalises. Some sort of guarantees were assured with regard to safeguarding the culture, identity, rights of land and property, and jobs to the local population.The situation will become clear only after some time. I think that ultimately it will be a win win situation for all and the Union Territory would take rapid steps on the path of development. Let us not be panicky and hope that the doubts of all the people who see something foul in the development will be cleared very soon.
Rajan Gupta, President Sarv Shakti Sena: Abrogation of Article 370 and 35A was a strong and historic step with a hope that a new era of development will usher in J&K Union Territory and it was welcomed by one and all. This step also fulfilled BJP’s election manifesto. But as time passed, it became imminent that people of Jammu Province were at the same place where they were before 5th August, 2019.
People now believe they have been given broken promises, false hopes, unemployment, financial mess and it seems that they may lose their identity and culture in near future.
The behavior of authorities in JK UT and at the Centre has again proved that Jammu Province will suffer under the shadow of Kashmir. People are helpless and their demands are not being even considered. No benefit to Jammuites after August 5, 2019.
Sumeet Kerni, Businessman: The decision to abrogate Article 370 has perhaps generated more emotions than any other event in the country in the recent past. From celebrations to anger, from euphoria to despondency, from pride to humiliation, it has seen a wide spectrum of emotions reflected through millions of conversations on social media. Article 35A remained an obstacle for non-permanent residents of J&K from permanently settling in the erstwhile state, buying immovable property, acquiring land, applying for government jobs or any kind of scholarships, aids etc. The people of J&K will now lose these benefits associated with the permanent resident certificate. Moreover, as per my opinion what has been promised is not being delivered to us. Corrupt fake politicians have hugely failed us.