SC order on Kashmir rebuffs government’s arrogance: P Chidambaram

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The Congress leader also demanded former J&K Governor Satya Pal Malik to own responsibilty for the state of affairs in Kashmir and resign from his present post of Goa's Governor. (Express Photo by Tashi Tobgyal)

Hours after the Supreme Court ordered the Jammu and Kashmir administration to review the curbs imposed in the Union Territory and asserted that access to the internet is a fundamental right, Congress leader P Chidambaram Friday stated that the apex court's order is a rebuff to the 'unconstitutional and arrogant stance of the central government'.

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"SC order is a rebuff to the unconstitutional and arrogant stance of the central government and the J&K administration on the restrictions imposed in J&K," the former Union Minister said on Twitter.

The Congress leader also demanded former J&K Governor Satya Pal Malik to own responsibilty for the state of affairs in Kashmir and resign from his present post of Goa's Governor. "The former Governor of J&K, Mr Satpal Malik, should own responsibility and resign from his present post of Governor, Goa," he said in a tweet.

EXPLAINED | Internet shutdown, Section 144 in Kashmir: How to read the SC’s order

In its first judgment since the dilution 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.

A five-judge bench headed by Justice N V Ramana also asked the J&K administration to restore internet services in institutions providing essential services like hospitals and educational centres. “Section 144 cannot be used to curb liberty; it can be used only where there is a likelihood of incitement of violence and danger to public safety,” it said.

The Centre had justified the restrictions citing national security and said that these were temporary measures in view of the prevailing situation in the region which was facing the brunt of cross-border terror.