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 What’s in news?

National Conference leader Omar Abdullah and Prime Minister Narendra Modi have brought the spotlight on two erstwhile positions in Jammu and Kashmir.

 Key data’s:

The two erstwhile positions in Jammu and Kashmir are;

  • J&K Prime Minister and
  • Sadr-e-Riyasat (President of the state).

 Issues all about:

  • Following a statement by BJP president Amit Shah that Article 35A may be abrogated by 2020, Omar referred to the time when J&K had its own Sadr-e-Riyasat and Prime Minister.
  • “National Conference wants 2 PMs, 1 in Kashmir & 1 for rest of India” PM Modi tweeted in response.


  • J&K had its own Prime Minister and Sadr-e-Riyasat until 1965, when the J&K Constitution was amended (Sixth Constitution of J&K Amendment Act, 1965) by the then Congress government, which replaced the two positions with Chief Minister and Governor respectively.
  • The first Prime Minister of J&K, appointed by Dogra ruler Maharaja Hari Singh, was Sir Albion Banerjee (1927-29). The state had nine more Prime Ministers before Independence. The first after Independence was Mehr Chand Mahajan (October 1947-March 1948). He was replaced with Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah, who until then had been Head of the Administration.
  • It was during Ghulam Mohammad Sadiq’s (Congress leader) tenure that the Centre replaced the two posts. In fact, Sadiq became the first Chief Minister of J&K, serving until December 1971.


  • The J&K Constitution was adopted on November 17, 1956 but came into effect only on January 26, 1957.
  • On June 10, 1952, the “Basic Principles Committee” appointed by the J&K Constituent Assembly recommended that “the institution of hereditary ruler ship shall be terminated” and “the office of the head of the State shall be elective”. Two days later, the Constituent Assembly unanimously adopted the report. The Constituent Assembly resolved that the head of state, named Sadr-e-Riyasat, would be elected by the Legislative Assembly for a term of five years and recognised by the President of India.
  • After a long consultation, the centre agreed to replace the Sadr-E-Riyasat by elected Governor.
  • Only a permanent resident of J&K could become Sadr-e-Riyasat. Once elected by the Legislative Assembly, the Sadr-e-Riyasat had to be recognised and then appointed by the President of India.

 Sixth Amendment:

  • The Sixth Amendment to the J&K Constitution, carried out in 1965, made a fundamental change to its basic structure. Under Section 147, an amendment is to be assented by the Sadr-e-Riyasat after a Bill is passed by a two-thirds majority of the House, while Section 147 itself cannot be amended by the state legislature, and neither can an amendment that changes the provisions of Constitution of India as applicable in relation to J&K.
  • Sadr-e-Riyasat, however, was replaced with Governor across the J&K Constitution, except in Section 147 which could not be amended. This has led to the existence of two kinds of heads of state in the Constitution — Sadr-e-Riyasat as well as Governor.
  • In 1975, a Presidential Order issued under Article 370 barred the J&K Legislature from making any change to the J&K Constitution regarding appointment and powers of the Governor.

Arun Jaitley’s response:

In a response to a question, he said, Sadar-E-Riyasat and Wazir-E-Azam, are dangerous to the country as it gives intiation for separatism. It was removed in 1935.

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