New Delhi (NVI): The statehood of Jammu and Kashmir would be restored at an appropriate time, Union Home Minister Amit Shah said today, while reiterating that its Union Territory status is temporary.
Speaking in the Lok Sabha, Shah also justified the legislative move to merge the Jammu and Kashmir cadre of IAS, IPS and Indian Forest Service officers with that of Arunachal Pradesh, Goa, Mizoram and Union Territory (AGMUT) — also known as the Union Territory cadre of the civil services.
“Jammu and Kashmir will get back the status of a State at an appropriate time,” he said.
The Home Minister recalled that he had said earlier that the Union Territory status of J&K is “temporary” and asked the members to trust him.
Jammu and Kashmir was bifurcated into two Union Territories – Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir and Union Territory of Ladakh – after revocation of Article 370 on August 5, 2019.
Hitting back at Congress and other opposition parties which have been raising questions over conversion of J&K into UT from a state, Shah said Article 370 was a temporary provision applied to Jammu and Kashmir but it continued for 70 years.
There were no questions on that, the Home Minister said, wondering why questions are being posed when he says the UT status is temporary.
He said that misinformation should not be spread regarding J&K.
On the bill to merge J&K cadre of IAS, IPS and Indian Forest Service officers with AGMUT, Shah asked why questions are being raised over it. “Do the IAS, IPS officers of J&K not have a right to serve elsewhere in the country?”
To the contention of some members that “outsiders” should not be sent to administration of J&K, the Union Home Minister asserted, “There is no ‘bahri’ (outsider). All are sons and daughters of mother India… Don’t use this language… Is Jammu and Kashmir not a part of India?”.
He said the move is in tune with civil services system existing across the country.
“There would have been many more IAS and IPS officers from J&K if schools had not been burnt and children had not been forced to go to Madrassa,” he added.