January 2005 News

PoK council proposes study on constitutional arrangements

2 January 2005
The Hindu
B. Muralidhar Reddy

Islamabad: In an unusual move, the Pakistan-controlled Jammu and Kashmir Council (referred to as the Azad Jammu and Kashmir Council) Secretariat has proposed a research study seeking proposals for 'constitutional' arrangements for Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK), keeping in view the 'emerging geopolitical ground reality.' PoK is neither a country nor a province though under the total control of Pakistan. However, the interim 1974 Constitution of PoK gives it the trappings of a country with a President, a Prime Minister and a Legislature of its own. The explanation offered by the PoK Council Secretariat for the research study is significant. It says that the study was being called 'in the backdrop of the existing Interim Constitution of 1974 so as to make it more comprehensive and in line with the emerging geopolitical ground reality with a focus on the potential role of the Azad Jammu and Kashmir Council.' It is immediately not clear as to what the Secretariat means by 'emerging geopolitical ground reality.' The Secretariat seeks the research study to focus on the 'genesis of Kashmir dispute and production of an all encompassing study bringing out circumstances, both political and administrative, necessitating the creation of AJ&K Council and study of the political status of Northern Areas as distinct from Kashmir and reasons for its peculiar politico-administrative set up.'

 

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