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73rd Independence Day: One Nation, One Constitution has become a reality: PM Modi

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, in his Independence Day speech from the Red Fort, said his government’s move to scrap Article 370 and Article 35A were important steps to achieve Sardar Patel’s dreams. He also mentioned legislation against Triple Talaq as an important milestone for getting the Muslim women justice. His government, he said, had achieved all this along with the amendments to the anti-terror law within the first 10-weeks of taking office.

‘Removal of Article 370 and Article 35A was an important step towards achieving the dreams of Sardar Patel,’ the Prime Minister said.

‘We don’t believe in delaying solving problems, we also don’t let problems fester. The legislation was passed by two-thirds vote in both Houses of Parliament. This shows everyone wanted to do this but no one was willing to be the first to take this step,’ he said suggesting previous governments were not resolute in dealing with this issue.

‘One Nation, One Constitution- this spirit has become a reality and India is proud of that.’ Prime Minister said, adding, ‘In less than 70 days of the new Government, Article 370 has become history, and in both Houses of Parliament, 2/3rd of the members supported this step.’

Prime Minister started his address by paying tribute to all the freedom fighters who laid their lives under the leadership of Mahatma Gandhi to win India Independence.

Prime Minister said accepting status-quo in Jammu and Kashmir was not an option for his government.

‘The old arrangement in Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh encouraged corruption, nepotism but there was injustice when it came to rights of women, children, Dalits, tribal communities. The dreams of sanitation workers were incomplete. How can we accept such a situation,’ he said.

‘Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh can contribute in a big way in India’s development. We can return the region to its past glory,’ he said.

Earlier this month, Narendra Modi government abrogated Article 370 of the constitution that granted special status to Jammu and Kashmir, Article 35A that empowered the Jammu and Kashmir legislature to define the state’s ‘permanent residents’ and their special rights and privileges also went with it.

The state was divided into two Union Territories of Jammu-Kashmir and Ladakh enabling all laws passed by the Parliament in the past and in future to apply there.

The women from Jammu and Kashmir will also be eligible for property rights even if they marry a non-Kashmiri. Lifting of the special status will also allow people from the rest of India to buy land there. The government hopes that the changes will usher in development in Jammu and Kashmir by drawing investors and removing administrative bottlenecks.

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