SC defers hearing on Article 35A till January 2019


New Delhi, Aug 31 : The Supreme Court on Friday deferred the hearing on a bunch of petitions challenging Article 35A of the Constitution as the Centre urged the court to take up matter after the Panchayat elections in the state.

The elections spread over eight phases will conclude in December.

A bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra, Justice M. Khanwilkar and Justice D.Y. Chandrachud deferred the hearing till the second week of January as Attorney General K.K. Venugopal told the court that it was a sensitive issue and could have a bearing on the Panchayat polls.

He said paramilitary forces were in the state for the conduct of the election.

Pointing to the sensitivity of the issue, the Attorney General informed the court that there was a strike on Friday in the Kashmir Valley on the issue.

Section 35A, inserted in the Constitution in 1954 by way of a Presidential order, bars outsiders from settling in or buying immovable property in the state.

Militants abduct 11 relatives of J&K policemen; worrisome, says Omar

Militants abducted two more relatives of Jammu and Kashmir policemen on Friday taking the number to 11 within the last three days, an official said. Former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah has termed the development “worrisome”.

Even when the security forces were working their strategy to recover the hostages safely, a statement purportedly issued by Hizbul operational commander Riyaz Naikoo, on the social media said that henceforth the militants would follow “an eye for an eye policy”.

“Police has compelled us to follow the course of an eye for an eye and an ear for an ear.

“Policemen are advised in their own interest to give up their jobs or be prepared to face the worst,” Naikoo, whose father was arrested by police two days back, said.

The abducted relatives of policemen include two brothers of police officers and nine sons.

Reacting to the development, former state Chief Minister, Omar Abdullah tweeted: “11 abductions! This is a very worrying reflection of the situation in the valley.

“What’s worse is the selective outrage — people/leaders who are so vocal about alleged security force excesses are silent about these abductions.”