No life lost, no bullet fired after Article 370 move, govt tells SC

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Justifying restrictions imposed in Jammu & Kashmir after the abrogation of provisions of Article 370, the Centre said on Thursday that neither a single life was lost, nor a single bullet fired, as a consequence of the preventive steps taken.

Attorney General K K Venugopal told the apex court that instead of questions, the government should be “congratulated” for effectively handling of the situation in the erstwhile state after the “historic” and “unparalleled” decision of August 5.

He told a Bench headed by Justice N V Ramana that had internet services been allowed after August 5, then with one click of a button, 10,000 messages could have been sent to thousands of separatists or other militant leaders to congregate, which could have resulted in chaos and massive incidents of violence.

“It is the past record which is being taken into account before taking any precautionary steps. The record shows series of terrorist incidents in the state. In July, 2016, three dreaded terrorist including Burhan Wani were killed in an encounter following which restrictions were imposed for three months in the state. At that time not a single case was filed but now 20 petitions have been filed,” Venugopal said.

Responding to the petitions filed by Anuradha Bhasin, editor of Kashmir Times, and Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad, he said: “What happened on August 5 is something which is unparalleled in the history of the country in the past 70 years.” 

He told the Bench that “Government of India should be congratulated for dealing with the situation in this manner. Not a single life was lost and not a single bullet fired”.

Referring to violence in the Valley, the Attorney General said that for the past so many years, terrorists were being pushed through from across the border, local militants and separatist organisation had held the civilians captive and it would have been “foolish” if steps weren’t taken.

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