Article 370, 35A, had been obstacles to democratic governance: VP Dhankhar

Jammu, Jan 4 (UNI) Vice President of India, Jagdeep Dhankhar, lauded on Thursday the collective role played by the Executive, Legislature, and Judiciary in the abrogation of Articles 370 and 35A of the Constitution, underscoring these provisions as ‘obstacles to democratic governance’.

What had been intended as a temporary provision of the Constitution had gone on to become detrimental to the nation, said the Vice President, creating an ecosystem that had handicapped the people of the region.

Dhankhar highlighted the government’s affirmative actions in Jammu and Kashmir, highlighting that previously denied sections of society now have a greater voice in governance and witness a transformed scenario.

With Article 370 no longer being part of the Constitution, Dr.Syama Prasad Mookerjee’s dream has been translated into reality, said the Vice President.

Addressing the inauguration of the Biotech Startup Expo on “Emerging Startup Trends in North India” in Kathua, the Vice President outlined five parameters or ‘Panchatantra’ that are fundamental to the growth and progress of any nation- peace and stability, equality of law, transparency and accountability in governance, an ecosystem that favours meritocracy, and empowerment of women—all of which, he said, are ground realities in India today.

Stressing on the fifth parameter, Dhankhar drew attention to the opportunities that have opened up for the women of Jammu and Kashmir, with the availability of property rights following the abrogation of Article 370, in addition to the rights conferred by the Nari Shakti VandanAdhiniyam.

Abrogation of Article 370 and the enabling initiatives taken by the government in Jammu and Kashmir have resulted in “development being completely delinked from partisan interests,” said the Vice President.

Recognising that every individual has a right to participate in politics, the Vice President cautioned that politics must not be allowed to become a deterrent to progress.

Expressing his appreciation for the nation’s progress in the domain of biotechnology, the Vice President made special mention of India’s position as the world’s third-largest startup ecosystem, having a greater number of unicorns than China.

Highlighting the extent of India’s internet penetration and its great number of digital transactions, Dhankhar also emphasised upon the importance of nurturing a robust research ecosystem for the progress of the country.

In his address, the Vice President also congratulated the graduating students and awardees of the Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology, Jammu, whose 8th Convocation Ceremony he was scheduled to attend earlier in the day.

Dhankhar conveyed his regrets for his inability to attend the event owing to adverse weather conditions.

The flight had to be rerouted through Pathankot prior to the event in Kathua, owing to the deteriorating weather situation.

The Union Minister of Science and Technology, Dr Jitendra Singh, Secretary, Department of Biotechnology, Dr Rajesh Gokhale, Secretary, Department of Scientific and Industrial Research, Dr. N. Kalaiselvi, and other dignitaries were also present on the occasion.

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