Protests against petitions challenging Art 35A continue

Protests against petitions challenging Art 35A continue
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Srinagar, Aug 2: Civil society organisations and business and trade bodies Thursday kept up their protests against the petitions in the Supreme Court challenging the validity of Article 35A of the Constitution.
Article 35A, which was incorporated in the Constitution by a 1954 Presidential Order, accords special rights and privileges to the Jammu and Kashmir citizens and denies property rights to a woman who marries a person from outside the state.
About 200 members of the Jammu and Kashmir Trade Union staged a peaceful sit-in at the fruit mandi in Parimpora area on the outskirts of the city here, a police official said.
Civil society members, including members of the minority Pandit community, later staged a sit-in at Pratap Park in the heart of the city.
A member of the Pandit community and a trade union leader Sampat Prakash said it is a “matter of shock and surprise” that the Supreme Court has admitted the pleas challenging the validity of Article 35A.
He backed the call for a strike on August 5-6 given by the separatists and appealed to the people to make the protests a success.
Later in the day, the business community took out a protest march in Shahr-e-Khaas (downtown) area of the city.
The protesters dispersed peacefully, the police official said.
The protests have intensified ahead of a Supreme Court hearing, scheduled for August 6, on petitions demanding that Article 35A be repealed.
The main petition demanding scrapping of Article 35A was filed before the apex court in 2014 by an RSS-linked NGO ‘We the Citizens’.