ജമ്മു കശ്മീർ പോലുള്ള സാഹചര്യങ്ങളിൽ ദുരിതമനുഭവിക്കുന്ന പൗരന്മാർ: എസ്‌സി – ടൈംസ് ഓഫ് ഇന്ത്യ


Translating…

Kashmir

Valley as a whole.

Appearing for Azad, senior advocate

Kapil Sibal

Sibal said while the government has the power to impose restrictions on citizens to maintain law and order but at the same time, it must facilitate the citizens to enjoy their fundamental rights to communicate, travel, approach hospital, carry on with their profession, attend schools etc.

“They (the government) thought that there will be a reaction to their (August 5) decision, so decided to suppress the reaction with the whole might of the state. But in the process, it forgot that every power comes coupled with a duty. This type of exercise of power will destroy functional democracy,” Sibal said.

With the senior advocate saying that it was impossible for Kashmiris to communicate with their wards studying or working outside the state and that they found it difficult to go to hospitals, Justice Gavai said, “In a situation like this, there is bound to be some difficulty for citizens. In any curfew situation, some citizens are bound to suffer.”

Sibal said some suffering for a small period of time was understandable but a complete clampdown for more than two months could never be justified.

He said Azad was stopped twice from entering his home state. “The reason given was that it would create a law and order situation. He travelled in the state for five days after getting permission from the Supreme Court. It did not create any law and order situation. Why would the government impede Azad’s fundamental right to engage in his profession that involves meeting the people and understanding their problems?” he asked.

The senior advocate said apple traders were the worst affected because of the clampdown as their produce suffered massive damage. “The state suffered Rs 10,000 crore economic loss because of the clampdown,” he said, prompting the court to ask whether the facts narrated by Sibal were taken from the ground or from media reports? Sibal conceded that when the communication link was disrupted, he had to rely on media reports. “The onus is on the government to justify its action with cogent reasons, none of which was given in the notification diluting

Article 370

,” he said.