Streets deserted as India formally divided J&K, Ladakh into 2 Union Territories

wilayattimes (Jammu and Kashmir)

Srinagar:Shops and offices were shut in Kashmir on Thursday and the streets largely deserted as central government led by Narendra Modi formally revoked the restive state’s constitutional autonomy and split it into two federal territories.

The President’s rule imposed in undivided Jammu and Kashmir was on Thursday revoked following bifurcation of the state into two Union Territories.

The two UTs of Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh come into existence on Thursday after the central government on August 5 decided to abrogate the special status given to Jammu and Kashmir under Article 370 and create them on October 31.

In exercise of the powers conferred by clause (2) of Article 356 of the Constitution, I, Ram Nath Kovind, President of India, hereby revoke the proclamation issued by me under the said article on December 19, 2018 in relation to the State of Jammu and Kashmir, the official notification said.

Earlier, the central rule was imposed in Jammu and Kashmir in June 2017 after resignation of the then Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti when the BJP withdrew support to the PDP-led goverment.

The first central rule as ‘Governor’s rule’ continued for six months. After six months, the President’s rule was imposed for the next six months which was subsequently extended with the approval of Parliament.

Article 356 of the Constitution under which President’s rule is imposed in a state, is not applicable in Union Territories.

GC Murmu and RK Mathur  sworn-in as first Lt Governors of Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh on Thursday.

On Thursday, there was little traffic on the streets of Srinagar, the main city, except for children going to school to complete hastily arranged exams. Many children have been kept out of school since the August clampdown.

Shops were shut as a mark of opposition against Kashmir’s new status.

Authorities deployed additional paramilitary forces in parts of Srinagar where small protests have erupted in the past since the August 5 announcement of the change of status.