SC did not come under any pressure this time: Ghulam Nabi Azad on J&K order

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Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad. (File)

Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad on Friday hailed the Supreme Court order on Jammu and Kashmir, saying the apex court, this time, 'did not come under any pressure'.

"The government of India has misled the entire country. This time the SC was forthright and they didn't come under any pressure," he said.

Welcoming the judgment, Azad said, "this is the first time the SC has talked about how people of Jammu and Kashmir feel. I would like to thank the SC for a very historic decision and the people from across the country were waiting for it, especially the people of JK."

The Congress' reaction came soon after the Supreme Court asked the Jammu and Kashmir administration to restore internet services within a week at essential institutions and noted that access to the internet is a fundamental right under Article 19 of the Constitution.

Congress spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala said the top court has given a big jolt to the Modi government's "illegal activities".

"SC delivers first big jolt of 2020 to illegal activities of Modi Govt by stating the importance of the internet as a fundamental right. Double shock for Modi-Shah that dissent cannot be oppressed by imposing section 144. Modiji reminded that nation bows before Constitution and not him!" Surjewala said in a tweet.

Former finance minister P Chidambaram said a new set of administration should be appointed in Jammu and Kashmir.

"The entire team in J&K that designed and executed the plan should be changed. A new set of administrators who respect the Constitution should be appointed," he said.

In its first judgment since the abrogation of Article 370 on August 5, the Supreme Court Friday directed the Jammu and Kashmir administration to place in the public domain all its orders on restrictions in the Union Territory within seven days so that those affected could challenge it, if necessary. The apex court said every existing restriction — on Section 144 and the Internet — should be supported by sufficient material and be amenable to judicial review, as it could have serious implications on the fundamental rights of affected parties.