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Ensure that normal life is restored in J&K: SC to Centre, state

By Vishal S

New Delhi, Sep 16: The Supreme Court on Monday asked the Union Government and the authorities in Jammu and Kashmir to ensure that normal life is restored in the state where situation has been tense since August 5 when Article 370 was repealed. The apex court told the government to see that normalcy is restored on a selective basis in the state while keeping in mind national interest.

A bench of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and justices S A Bobde and S A Nazeer asked authorities to restore normal life in the Valley and ensure people have access to welfare facilities. The court said the restoration will be on a selective basis keeping in mind national interests, a PTI report said.

The Supreme Court

The court asked the Centre to make all endeavours to restore normalcy in Kashmir as soon as possible and said that as the so-called shutdown is in the valley itself, then it can be dealt with by the Jammu and Kashmir High Court. The court's directions came on a plea by Anuradha Bhasin, Executive Editor of Kashmir Times seeking removal of communication restrictions in Jammu and Kashmir.

[How India is ensuring that the debate on Kashmir is not raked up at UNHRC]

In a separate case today, the Supreme Court allowed senior Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad to visit Jammu and Kashmir (J&K). He had earlier moved the Supreme Court of India (SC) seeking permission to visit his home state to enquire about the well being of his family.

The apex court granted Azad permission to visit Srinagar, Baramulla, Anantnag and Jammu, said reports. The apex court has also asked Ghulam Nabi Azad to file a report on the situation in Kashmir.

Attorney General K K Venugopal, appearing for the Centre, told the bench that not a single bullet has been fired and there are some localised restrictions in place, adding that restrictions have been lifted in over 88 per cent police stations in Kashmir division.

[Hectic day in SC as batch of pleas on J&K set to be heard]

He told the bench that all Kashmir-based newspapers were running and the government had been offering all kinds of assistance. He also said that TV channels like Doordarshan and others private ones along with FM networks are working in the state. The bench asked the Attorney General to put details of these steps taken on an affidavit, PTI report said.

The Supreme Court has also sought a response from the Centre on the whereabouts of former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Farooq Abdullah. The Centre has been granted time until September 30 to file its response.

Rajya Sabha MP and MDMK founder Vaiko had moved the Supreme Court seeking a direction to the Centre and Jammu and Kashmir to produce former state Chief Minister Farooq Abdullah, allegedly under detention following abrogation of Article 370, before the court.

OneIndia News with PTI inputs

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