Jammu and Kashmir Reservation (Amendment) Bill, 2023 and the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation (Amendment) Bill, 2023

Amit Shah says Reservation Bill will give back 'rights' to people deprived for 70 years

The Jammu and Kashmir Reservation (Amendment) Bill, 2023 and the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation (Amendment) Bill, 2023 were passed on Wednesday, December 6, in the Lok Sabha. Speaking in the Lok Sabha, Union Home Minister Amit Shah highlighted that the two Bills will give justice to those deprived of their rights for the last 70 years.

Amit Shah emphasised that one of the Bills will aim to provide representation to the people who had to leave Kashmir due to terrorism. This Bill will seek to nominate two Kashmiri migrant community members to the Assembly, including a woman. Shah said, "Two seats will be reserved for Kashmiri migrant community members, and one seat in the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly will be reserved for people displaced from Pakistan-occupied Kashmir. For the first time, nine seats will be reserved for SC/ST communities."

“When they (Kashmiri Pandits) were displaced, they were forced to live as refugees in their country. Around 46,631 families were displaced in their own country. This Bill is to get them rights, this Bill is to give them representation," said Shah.

Targeting the erstwhile Congress government, Shah said, “There was an era of terrorism (in Jammu and Kashmir) after the 1980s and it was a horrifying scene. Those who lived on the land considering it their country, were thrown out and no one cared about them, neither did they try to stop it. In fact, those who were responsible to stop it  were enjoying vacations in England.”

Shah also highlighted that 45,000 people have lost their lives due to terrorism in Jammu and Kashmir so far, and said, “I believe the Modi government will return to power in 2024 and by 2026 I hope there will be no terror incident in Jammu & Kashmir.”

Shah also suggested that the plan to have zero-terror incidents in Jammu and Kashmir is in force for three years, and is expected to be successful by 2026. Further, talking about the bills passed by the Modi government, Shah said, the bill is another addition to the hundreds of progressive changes brought in the country by PM Modi. Shah said, “(The Opposition) raised some legal and constitutional issues. First, they said the law, in which the amendment has brought, itself is challenged in the court. I want to ask (Hasnain) Masoodi, Article 370 was challenged for several years, why didn't you stop it?" 

Shah also stressed that if Jawaharlal Nehru had taken the right steps, Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK) would have been part of India and said, “Kashmir suffered for several years because of the two blunders during the tenure of PM Jawaharlal Nehru. The biggest mistake was that when our forces were winning, a ceasefire was announced and PoK came into existence. Had the ceasefire been delayed by three days, PoK would have been a part of India. Second was the blunder to take our issue to the UN.”

The Jammu and Kashmir Reservation Bill will amend the Jammu and Kashmir Reservation Act, 2004. While, the the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation (Amendment) Bill, 2023 will provide for the reorganisation of the state of Jammu and Kashmir into the Union Territories of Jammu and Kashmir (with legislature) and Ladakh (without legislature).

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