Mumbai: Reiterating its stand on the abrogation of Article 370 of the constitution, Shiv Sena on Thursday said that "Kashmir will not be given to Muslims as a gift".
Shiv Sena in its editorial mouthpiece Saamna stated, "The population of Muslims in the valley is 68.35 per cent, while Hindus make up to 28.45 per cent of the total strength in the state. This does not mean Kashmir will be given to Muslims as a 'gift'. They are Indians, too, and the laws of the country must be extended to them. For this, Article 370 must be abrogated" Article 370 protects and grants special status to the sovereignty of the state and gives it the power to make a separate set of laws to be applied for its governance.
The party also heaped praises at Union Home Minister Amit Shah for taking up the issue of delimitation of constituencies in Jammu and Kashmir. Shah on June 4 held a high-level meeting with Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satyapal Malik, Intelligence Bureau Director Rajiv Jain and Ministry of Home Affairs to discuss the long-pending issue of delimitation of constituencies.
"The time is changing now as Amit Shah has given priority to the Kashmir issue. Shah has made his intentions clear by holding a meeting in Delhi to discuss the situation of Jammu and Kashmir. Delimitation was also discussed in the meeting. It will not be easy but it is good that Amit Shah is showing the intent," it read.
"Politics in the state has so far been played in the pressure to keep the Muslim population happy. The delimitation is opposed so that no Hindu Chief Minister is ever elected," it added.
The Election Commission of India (ECI) on May 4 said that it was considering to hold the Assembly elections in Jammu and Kashmir later this year, the dates of which will be announced after the conclusion of Amarnath Yatra.