The Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Bill, 2019

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The Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Bill, 2019

The Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Bill, 2019 was presented in Rajya Sabha by the Minister of Home Affairs dated 5 August 2019. The Bill provides for the restructuring of the state Jammu and Kashmir into the Union Territory of Ladakh and Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir. Ending Jammu and Kashmir’s special status granted under Article 370 in the Indian Union, the government has prolonged all provisions of the Constitution to the State in one go, downsized the State into two Union Territories, and permitted all citizens of India to buy property and vote in the State.

Following are the provisions of the bill-

Reorganisation of Jammu and Kashmir The Bill reorganizes the state of Jammu and Kashmir into:
  • the Union Territory of Ladakh without a legislature.
  • the Union Territory of Jammu with a legislature,
The Union Territory (UT) of Ladakh will include Kargil and Leh districts, and the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir will include the remaining territories of the existing of Jammu and Kashmir.
Lieutenant Governor The Union Territory of Ladakh will be Governed by the President, through a Lieutenant Governor appointed by him. The Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir will be governed by the President, through a Governor appointed by him known as the Lieutenant Governor.
Legislative Assembly of Jammu and Kashmir The Bill provides for a Legislative Assembly for the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir. The total number of seats in the Legislative Assembly will be 107. Of these, 24 seats will remain vacant on account of specific regions of Jammu and Kashmir being under the occupation of Pakistan. Further, seats will be put aside in the Assembly for Scheduled Tribes and Scheduled Castes in proportion to their population in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir. Additionally, the Lieutenant Governor may nominate two members to the Legislative Assembly to give representation to women, if they are not adequately represented.
The Assembly will have tenure of 5 years, and the Lieutenant Governor must summon the Assembly at least once in 6 months. The Legislative Assembly may make laws for any part of the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir related to:
  • any matter in the Concurrent List applicable to Union Territories.
  • any matters precised in the State List of the Constitution, except “Police” and “Public Order”

Parliament will be empowered to make laws in relation to any matter for the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir.