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J&K Reservation Bill

Topic covered:

Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.

 

J&K Reservation Bill

 

What to study?

For prelims: Key features of the bill.

For mains: concerns and issues associated, what is the way out?

 

Context: Rajya Sabha passed the Jammu and Kashmir Reservation Bill. Passed by Lok Sabha last week, the Bill partially amends a Presidential Order of 1954 in order to amend the state’s Reservation Act.

 

Highlights:

  1. It aims to extend the reservation in appointments and promotions for state government posts to socially and educationally backward classes.
  2. The bill paves the way for people living near the International Border in Jammu and Kashmir to get the benefit of reservation in jobs, promotion and educational institutions on par with those living along the Line of Actual Control (LoAC).
  3. The compulsory seven-year service for those appointed on the basis of residence near the LoAC will also be applicable to people near the International Border.
  4. Socially and educationally backward people with annual incomes above three lakh rupees cannot apply for reservations. However, this limit does not apply to people living near the LoAC and the new bill includes people residing near the International Border in this exemption.

 

Opposition:

While no one in J&K has opposed the decision to provide benefits to SCs, STs and EWS, there has been opposition to the route taken by the Centre and its nominee the J&K Governor, on the ground that they “breached” Article 370 while issuing the amendment to the 1954 Presidential Order.

The 1954 order is an executive order issued by the President under Article 370 to extend provisions of an Act of Parliament to J&K State, which can be done only with the concurrence of the state government.

At the centre of the controversy is the question whether the Governor, in the absence of an elected government, has the authority to give consent to extend a law of Parliament and change the constitutional arrangement between J&K and the Union.

 

Sources: the Hindu.