Bengaluru: Kashmiri Hindu Cultural Welfare Trust (KHCWT), Regd, Bangalore was among the first KP organisations to welcome the abrogation of Article 370 and 35A by Modi-led government. A resolution, adopted and signed by nearly 400 KPs living in and around Bangalore, passed a resolution hailing the abrogation of these dreaded articles, was sent to the PM and HM.

Subsequently, after threadbare deliberations among the Managing Committee of the KHCWT, it was decided to strengthen the hands of Govt of India and file a petition in the Supreme Court of India, hailing the abrogation of this article.

On November 13, 2019, a petition was filed by KHCWT led by its President R K Mattoo, justifying the abrogation of Article 370 and 35A.

The move was necessitated as many individuals has gone to supreme court in an appeal against the Government of India's decision. As expected, political parties National Conference (NC), the Sajjad Lone-led J&K Peoples Conference and CPI (M) leader Mohd Yousuf Tarigami have filed pleas. Others include former defence officers and bureaucrats --Radha Kumar, ex-member of Home Ministry's Group of Interlocutors for J&K (2010-11), former J&K cadre IAS officer Hindal Haidar Tyabji, Air Vice Marshal (Retd) Kapil Kak, Major Gen. (Retd) Ashok Kumar Mehta, ex-Punjab-cadre IAS officer Amitabha Pande and ex-Kerala-cadre IAS officer Gopal Pillai; bureaucrat-turned-politician Shah Faesal, and Sheila Rashid.

The plea by Tej Kumar Moza, Karishma Tej Kumar Moza and All India Kashmiri Samaj, seeking to be made parties in the ongoing matter. KHCWT (R), Bangalore has also joined them in filing an intervening Petition and it has been admitted. Reputed Lawyer Ms Aishwarya Bhati who is a former Secretary of BCI and also the present Advocate General of Uttar Pradesh Government has taken up the matter on our behalf. She is represented by Ms Archana Pathak Dave as the AOR. Through this legal application, KHCWT has sought intervention in the matter dealing with the case of these individuals who have approached the SC against the abrogation.

It is now posted for December 10th. The petition was prepared by known legal luminaries in Bangalore and vetted by senior advocates in Chennai and Bangalore before the draft petition was handed over to Ms. Aishwarya Bhati.

Being always alert and watchful; keeping the spirits of the Kashmiri Pandits who left their abode and settled in Karnataka, Kashmir Pandits organised themselves into a Samithi and later Trust under the Kashmir Hindu Cultural Welfare Trust ®. It has steadfastly built up and reunited the community and works for their welfare. Doing yeomen service including medical aid for needy; spiritual programmes through Ishwar Ashram Trust and a powerful temple of Neelakanteswara to Inspire; there are many things that are worthy and efforts to integrate as well as keep the spirits of the Pandits community high; overcoming their grievous hurt and isolation from their Native land. Our heavenly bliss Kashmir!

So, who other than Pandit community would be the most happiest on Government removing the obnoxious and gruesome Article 370 on 5th August 2019? Our joy of hoping for development that was long overdue and also rehabilitation to our own paradise is not a distant dream any more. But then after the Narendra Modi government led by the most capable leader in Home Minister Amit Shah did it to remove this sticky Constitution blot.

This was ably and excellently handled even diplomatically globally and all detractors threat and fear has so far overcome. But just like the attempt in the Rafale issue; all these parties in order to keep it alive have now come together to approach the Supreme Court as the last resort. The final verdict of passing the test of democracy in our country is in the Apex Court Judiciary. After this the Government has no hurdles to pass.

Senior Counsel Rajeev Dhavan, representing the Jammu and Kashmir People's Conference, urged the Court to hear the issue on aspects like bifurcation of services, division of assets and transfer of properties ahead of the main issues. However, the Court said that it would hear the entire case and adjudicate on the entirety of the case together.

When the matter came up for hearing, the Bench expressed the need for one common compilation of all the documents of both sides to ensure that the hearing becomes easier.
Given that there are over 20-odd petitions in the case with two fresh petitions admitted by the Court along with ours, the counsel told the Bench that some time would be required to prepare this compilation.

Each side nominated one advocate for the purpose of putting together a common compilation. The responsibility has been placed on Advocate S Prasanna for the petitioners (Ironically, he worked with us on my earlier case and I know him personally) and Advocate Ankur Talwar for the respondents.

The Court directed the Centre to file a counter on or before November 22 which has already been done.