Instead of taking up sensitive issues, judiciary putting off such matters: Congress on Article 370 hearings

The petitioners have challenged the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Act, 2019 and the presidential orders that followed.

Published: 14th September 2019 10:06 PM  |   Last Updated: 14th September 2019 10:06 PM   |  A+A-

A view of a closed market during restrictions after the abrogration of Article 370 and bifurcation of State in Srinagar Saturday September 14 2019. | PTI

A view of a closed market during restrictions after the abrogration of Article 370 and bifurcation of State in Srinagar Saturday September 14 2019. | PTI

By PTI

NEW DELHI: The Congress on Saturday said the judiciary is putting off even sensitive matters which is resulting in India's criticism at the world stage and disappointment among citizens whose fundamental rights are in question, days after the Supreme Court referred a batch of pleas against the abrogation of Article 370 provisions for hearing in October.

The petitioners have challenged the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Act, 2019 and the presidential orders that followed.

Congress spokesperson Anand Sharma, at a press conference here, said: "It has been seen, not in one case but many, that the country's judiciary, even on sensitive issues, instead of taking them up and deciding, is putting them off. There is neither denial nor action and there is a continuous delay."

There are various such issues on which delay raises questions at the world stage, India gets criticised and the citizens of the country, whose fundamental rights are concerned, are also getting disappointed, he said.

"My direct indication is towards the recent constitution of the Supreme Court's constitutional bench on the issue of Jammu and Kashmir, but hearing did not commence," Sharma said.

Asked to elaborate on the issue, he said: "I have made the statement, I will not expand. I specifically said that when serious constitutional matters come up, those should be taken up promptly, this is my view and I stand by that."

"You cannot delay issues pertaining to the Constitution by months. We hope, that will not happen and the judiciary will rise to the occasion to reassure the citizens that the foundational values of the Indian Constitution shall remain protected and secured," he said.

Sharma alleged that here has been "institutional subversion" and the institutions of administration or governance and deliverance of justice to uphold India's constitutional democracy and the fundamental rights of the citizens have been "weakened".

"We have expected throughout that the judiciary of this country, being the custodian of the statute, shall protect its foundational values and citizens' fundamental rights. There are concerns that timely intervention and deliverance is not taking place. It is on multiple counts," he said.

Without going into details, there can be differences of views, ideologies, but in a democracy, the rights of all citizens which are guaranteed under the Constitution and justiciable should be protected, he said.

"An environment of fear, distrust, intolerance, growing violence, strife and crime and a feeling of insecurity" is prevailing among the people of India, the Congress leader alleged.

Accusing the government of indulging in political vendetta, he said the Congress leaders have been singled out as in the case of former Union minister P Chidambaram and Karnataka leader D K Shivakumar.

"We have a question to ask. Are there two sets of rules and two sets of laws in the Republic of India - one which governs the opposition and one which benefits the ruling party leaders in the same country which are meant to be based on rule of governance?" he said.

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