6 Aug 2019 3:20 AM GMT
The order issued by President Ram Nath Kovind on Monday invoking Article 370(1) of the Constitution to effectively take away the special status of Jammu and Kashmir has taken the nation by surprise.While debates on the legality and propriety of the Central Government move are going on, it is pertinent to note that J&K is not the only state which has special provisions...
The order issued by President Ram Nath Kovind on Monday invoking Article 370(1) of the Constitution to effectively take away the special status of Jammu and Kashmir has taken the nation by surprise.
While debates on the legality and propriety of the Central Government move are going on, it is pertinent to note that J&K is not the only state which has special provisions under Constitution.
There are at least ten states other than J&K which have been given special provisions by the Constitution. In some of these States, Parliamentary laws have restricted application.
Article 371 : Maharashtra & Gujarat
Governors of the states of Maharashtra and Gujarat are given special responsibilities to set up development boards in regions such as Vidarbha, Marathwada, Kutchh etc.
Article 371A - Nagaland
It states that laws enacted by Parliament will not apply to Nagaland in respect of religious or social practices of Nagas, Naga customary law and procedure, administration of civil or criminal justice involving decisions according to Naga customary law and ownership and transfer of land and its resources. The Central laws in relation to these matters can apply only if the Legislative Council agrees to it by passing a resolution.
Article 371B – Assam
With the aim of giving autonomy and voice to tribes, the President can provide for the constitution and functions of a committee of Legislative Assembly of the state consisting of members elected from the tribal areas of Assam.
Article 371C – Manipur
This is similar to 371B for Assam.
Article 371D & E – Andhra Pradesh
Article 371D, which was added to the Constitution in 1974, provides equitable opportunities and facilities for the people of the state and safeguards their rights in matters of employment and education. The state government may organise civil posts or direct recruitment to posts in local cadre as required.
Article 371E states that the Parliament may by law provide for the establishment of a University in Andhra Pradesh.
Article 371F – Sikkim
Article 371F, incorporated in 1975, states that the Legislative Assembly shall consist of not less than 30 members. In order to reflect the diversity of different groups in Sikkim, seats in the assembly are provided to people of these different sections.
Article 371G – Mizoram
Similar to Article 371A in case of Nagaland. An act of Parliament would not apply to Mizoram in matters relating to religious or social practices of Mizo, Mizo customary law and procedure, administration of civil or criminal justice involving decisions according to Mizo customary law, ownership and transfer of land and its resources.
Article 371H – Arunachal Pradesh
The governor has special powers on the state's law and order situation and can overrule the chief minister's decision on the basis of this provision
Article 371I – Goa
The Legislative Assembly of the state of Goa must consist of not less than 30 members.
Article 371J grants special status to six backward districts of Hyderabad-Karnataka region. The special provision requires that a separate development board be established for these regions (similar to Maharashtra and Gujarat) and also ensures local reservation in education and government jobs.
As per Article 244(1), the President by order may designate areas as 'Scheduled Areas' and they will be governed by the special provisions in the Fifth Schedule.This is to give tribal population more autonomy and voice in regulation of their affairs.
Para 4 of the Fifth Schedule provides for establishment of a Tribes Advisory Council (TAC) in any State having Scheduled Areas. In respect of such areas, the Governor has to act as per the aid and advice of the TAC and not the council of ministers.
The Governor can direct that any particular Act of Parliament or of the Legislature of the State shall or shall not apply to a Scheduled Area or any part thereof in the State, subject to such exceptions and modifications, as specified.
Governor can also restrict buying and transferring of lands in scheduled areas.
At present, 10 States namely Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Odisha, Rajasthan and Telangana have Fifth Schedule Areas.