Table of Contents
   About the Author
   Indian Federalism
   Integration of States
   Article 370
   The Constituent Assembly
   Federal Jurisdiction
   Division of Powers
   State Apart
   Download Book

Koshur Music

An Introduction to Spoken Kashmiri

Panun Kashmir


Symbol of Unity



The Indian federal organization evolved, partly as an expression o the quest for Indian Unity, the struggle for freedom in India underlined and partly as a process of the distribution of political authority among the constituents of the Indian Dominion, which was brought into being with the termination of the British Colonial rule in India. The overriding consideration, which determined the course of federalization in India was the anxiety of the founding fathers of the Indian Constitution to integrate the Indian Provinces and the Indian states into an inseparable political unity and accomplish the Revolution of power to allocate an independent sphere of authority to its constituents, Provinces as well as the States.

The founding fathers did not recognize any subnational boundaries, which divided India, into the denominations of the federal structure, they devised. The Provinces and the States, were cultural, linguistic and religious pluralities, and their political boundaries did not synchronize with any specific subnational gradients.

The one exception to this principle, adopted by the framers of the Indian constitution, was the special position, the Jammu and Kashmir state was accorded. The Jammu and Kashmir State was recognized as an autonomous identity, based upon the Muslim majority character of its population. The State was not brought within the process of the integration of the Indian princely States, which followed their accession to the Dominion of India. The representatives of the Jammu and Kashmir State, participated in the deliberations of the Constituent Assembly of India, but the National Conference which formed the Interim Government in the State, favored the exclusion of the State from the constitutional organization of India. Consequently special constitutional provisions were embodied in Article 370 of the Constitution of India for the State. The state was reserved the right to convene a separate Constituent Assembly was convened in 1951. In November 1956, it completed the task of framing the Constitution of the State. The Constitution of the state was brought in to force on 26 January 1957.

The Jammu and Kashmir state has ever been governed by two sets of constitutional provisions, the first envisaged by the constitution of India state. The position of the state, in the Indian constitutional organization has been determined by the constitution of India and the instruments of the State Government have been devised by the constitution of the state.

The present study is aimed to trace the process of federalization which led to the integration of the Indian States into the Indian Union and the inclusion of special provisions for the Jammu and Kashmir state. Since Jammu and Kashmir presents a variant of the federal structure in which the Indian States were welded, the present study is expected to provide a perspective for the future evolution of the federal frames which the founding fathers of the Indian constitution constructed. In recent years, there has been an insistent emphasis on the recognition of subnational diversities of India as components of the Indian federal system. The present study, which is focussed on the analysis of the placement of Jammu and Kashmir, as a subnational identity in the Indian federal system, reveals much and can serve as an indicator for any reconsideration of the federal relations, between the center and the states in India.

The author is indebted to the keepers of the Jammu and Kashmir State Archives Jammu, keepers of the Sapru House Library, New Delhi, and the keepers of the Jawahar Lal Nehru Memorial Museum, Library, New Delhi. The author is thankful to Dr. Sukhbir Chowdhry of the Indian Council of World Affairs, Sapru House, New Delhi, Shri T.C. Mor and Shri Surinder M. Talwar, for their valuable help.

Mohan Krishen Teng



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World Kashmiri Pandit Conference, 1993
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