Rules for administration in Jammu and Kashmir

On August 28, 2020, the Government of India issued rules for administration in Jammu and Kashmir. It specifies the functions of Council of Ministers and Lieutenant Governor.

Role of Lieutenant Governor

  • The executive functions of Lieutenant Governor include public order, police, anti-corruption, All India Services.
  • The critical issues that affect the peace of the Union Territory or that will affect the minority community, Scheduled Tribe, Scheduled Caste or Backward classes are to be submitted to the Lieutenant Governor.
  • When there is a difference of opinion between the Minister and the LG, the decision of the LG is to have to be accepted by the Council of Minsters

The Council of Ministers or the Chief Minister will have no say in the above functions of LG.

Role of the President

  • When difference of opinion arises between the LG and the Council of ministers, the LG shall refer to the President and shall act according to his advice.
  • In the above cases, the LG will be empowered to pass directions till the President makes a decision.

Role of Council of Minister

  • The executive powers of the Chief Minister and the Council of Minsters have been restricted to the areas such as land revenue, imposition of new tax, sale or lease o government property, reconstituting departments.
  • The matter that brings in controversy between the Central Government and the LG is to be brought to the notice of Central Government at the earliest.

Background

The elections for the UT of Jammu and Kashmir are to be held in 2021 after the delimitation exercise according to the J&K Reorganisation Act, 2019. In 2019, Article 370 of the constitution was abrogated and the special status of Jammu and Kashmir was revoked.

Earlier, that is before abrogation, the Chief Minister was the most powerful person in decision-making process. With new rules, the powers of the CM has been reduced, especially that of law and order.


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