Clock cannot be set back but review Central laws: Interlocutors

The Interlocutors have called for a review of all Central Acts and all Articles of the Constitution of India extended to Jammu and Kashmir after the 1952 Delhi agreement

New Delhi: Ruling out a return to the pre-1953 position, Centre's interlocutors on Thursday recommended setting up of a Constitutional Committee to review all Acts and Articles of the Constitution of India extended to Jammu and Kashmir and upholding of Article 370, reports PTI.

The report of the interlocutors--Dileep Padgaonkar, Radha Kumar and MM Ansari-- underlined that "the clock cannot be set back" but felt that the 'erosion' of Article 370 over decades needed to be "re-appraised" to give it more powers.

In their 176-page report, made public today, they have called for a review of all Central Acts and all Articles of the Constitution of India extended to the state after the 1952 Delhi agreement which also gave special status to the state under Article 370.

"This does not mean a pure and simple return to the pre-1953 situation. The clock cannot be set back. Instead, the group wants such a review to take into full account the changes that have taken place in the last six decades," the report said.

In the pre-1953 era, the Centre's jurisdiction was mainly restricted to Defence, External Affairs, Communication and Finance. The 1952 agreement between the Centre and Sheikh Abdullah enabled extension of all the central acts, Articles of Constitution of India including Supreme Court and hoisting of Indian tri-colour along with the state flag.

Significantly, the state assembly passed a resolution in 2000 demanding among other things rescinding of all central legislation except Defence, Finance, Telecom and External Affairs, which was rejected by the Union Government.

In a move aimed at strengthening of Article 370, the interlocutors report demanded deletion of the word 'temporary' from its heading in the Constitution and replacing it with 'special' as has been used in Article 371 in the case of some states.

A similar recommendation was made in the autonomy resolution of the state Assembly.

Padgaonkar later said that interlocutors have not recommended abolition of Article 370. "What we have said is that we are not inventing something. Under article 371 there are several states of the Union which have been designated as special category states.

"We have just said that you remove the word temporary as regards J and K and use the word special as it is being done in the case of several states. We have listed the state which come under the category of special states. Instead of temporary, we wanted to put the word special in line with what is being done with the other states."

The interlocutors have recommended status quo in the use of nomenclatures in English of Governor and Chief Minister and equivalent nomenclatures in Urdu may be used.

In an earlier era until 1965, the Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir was addressed as 'Wazir-e-Azam' (Prime Minister) and the Governor as 'Sadar-e-Riyasat' (President).


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Novartis India Q4 net profit declines 3% at Rs33 crore

Novartis India's sales rose to Rs204.5 crore from Rs182.7 crore

New Delhi: Pharmaceutical company Novartis India on Thursday said its net profit declined 3.2% to Rs32.9 crore for the fourth quarter ended March 2012 from Rs34 crore a year ago, reports PTI.

Novartis India, in a filing to the BSE, said its net sales, however, rose to Rs204.5 crore during the fourth quarter, as against Rs182.7 crore same period last year.

For the year ended March 2012, the company posted a net profit of Rs152.02 crore, as against Rs146.67 crore in 2010-11 fiscal. Net sales of the company for FY12 stood at Rs844.28 crore, as compared to Rs751.19 crore in the previous fiscal.

The company's board, which met today, also recommended a full year dividend of 200%.

Shares of Novartis India today closed at Rs 719.25 on the BSE in late afternoon trade, up 0.58% from its previous close.


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