The Supreme Court on Wednesday heard a batch of petitions challenging the Centre's decision to abrogate Article 370, revoking the special status of Jammu and Kashmir. Hearing the petitions, the top court said that the petition will be heard by a Constitutional bench in the first week of October. The hearing of the case on Wednesday was done by a bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi.
While the petition against the scrapping of Article 370 has been filed by CPI(M) leader Sitaram Yechury, advocate M L Sharma, National Conference MPs Mohd Akbar Lone and Justice (rtd) Hasnain Masoodi have challenged the changes made in the constitutional status of Jammu and Kashmir by the Centre. They have also been joined by former IAS officer Shah Faesal and former JNU student leader Shehla Rashid and several others including Radha Kumar. Yechury has also petitioned the court for the production of party leader Mohammed Yousuf Tarigami, who has been under detention.
Congress opposed the move to abrogate Article 370 even after the move was quoted by the government as a step to improve the life of Kashmiris and integrate the state of Jammu and Kashmir with India. Even as the Centre and the security forces are trying their level best to restore normalcy in Jammu and Kashmir after the abrogation of Article 370, Opposition delegation led by Congress travelled to Srinagar on August 24. The delegation led by Congress comprisesd of Rahul Gandhi, Ghulam Nabi Azad, Anand Sharma, as well as other leaders of Opposition - CPI's D Raja, CPI(M)'s Sitaram Yechury, RJD's Manoj Jha and others. As the leaders boarded the flight to Srinagar, they claimed that they are going to talk to common Kashmiri people. They also said that they want to help restore normalcy in the valley. Questioning the government, they said that if everything is normal in Kashmir why are Opposition leaders not allowed to visit the valley.
Earlier taking to Twitter, Rahul Gandhi had demanded to visit the Valley after abrogation of Article 370. Responding to him, Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik had offered to send him a 'plane' to visit the state so that he would stop fear mongering over it. In response, Rahul Gandhi explicitly stated that while he won't 'need an aircraft' but 'freedom' should be assured for him to travel and meet mainstream leaders and soldiers deployed in the valley. However, the delegation was sent back from Srinagar even after Rahul Gandhi insisted that he is visiting after J&K governor agreed him visiting the valley. The security forces said that to maintain peace it is necessary that situation is not hindered.
On August 5, India revoked Article 370 of the Constitution removing special status to Jammu and Kashmir. Additionally it has also bifurcated the state into two Union Territories -- Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh. Reacting to India's decision, Pakistan took a number of steps including expulsion of the Indian High Commissioner soon after deciding to downgrade diplomatic ties with New Delhi. India has categorically told the international community that its move to scrap Article 370 of the Constitution is India's internal matter. Despite Pakistan's repeated attempt to internationalise the issue, international community including UN has categorically said that it is a bilateral matter and there is no scope for 'third party mediation'. Moreover, to Pakistan's embarrassment, Imran Khan's minister have been peddling fake news to attract the international forum towards Kashmir issue, but the Indian army has busted their attempts each time.