Data doesn't support Amit Shah's claim that Article 370 deprived J&K of development -Rukmini S

-ThePrint.in

Despite being ruled by BJP for the longest time, Hindi belt states lag far behind Jammu & Kashmir on education and various other indicators.

There is no doubt that the Narendra Modi government’s decision to remove special rights for Jammu and Kashmir’s administration and to convert the state into two Union Territories is ideological and political. The removal of Articles 370 and 35A has been a lynchpin of the BJP’s political agenda since its Jana Sangh days.

The only recent survey to have sought the opinions of residents of Jammu and Kashmir on any change in how their state should be administered was conducted after the 2014 Lok Sabha election in the state. The Lokniti programme at the Centre for the Study of Developing Societies (CSDS) asked respondents in a representative sample survey conducted in the state what they believed would be the best solution to the Kashmir issue. Nearly half of the respondents did not answer; among those who did, a larger number favoured more independence than those who sought less powers or autonomy for the state. Just 0.2 per cent wanted Article 370 amended.

If it’s not what the people of the state want, why is bringing Jammu and Kashmir under the central government’s direct rule so important? In his speech in the Rajya Sabha as he introduced the clutch of bills, Home Minister Amit Shah said that people of “the country” wanted to know why Article 370 was still in operation in Jammu and Kashmir, and why “despite getting so much money, its people are still poor”. “Article 370 ensures there is no PPP model, no private investment in the state. 370 ensures the healthcare in Jammu and Kashmir suffers, no doctor wants to go there. 370 ensures there is no right to education for the children of Kashmir,” Shah said.

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ThePrint.in, 7 August, 2019, https://theprint.in/opinion/data-doesnt-support-amit-shahs-claim-that-article-370-deprived-jk-of-development/273302/?fbclid=IwAR2x7qGa4OwzWoGjnymoWZHWJZnFLDpFRnTI5lPzutTnQ

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