Recently Indian ruling government declared a state Jammu and Kashmir as Union territory by splitting the state into two parts. Why was this done, what are reasons for doing this.

Background: This comes after the government scrapped the Article 370 (Giving a special status to Jammu and Kashmir) and bring the state under the Union of India. But why split into two Union Territories.


2 Answers 2


Recently Indian ruling government declared a state Jammu and Kashmir as Union territory by splitting the state into two parts

No, Indian government didn't do such thing as of Aug 5, 2019. The Home Minister of Union Executive so far tabled a Bill in the Rajya Sabha which would bifurcate the state of J&k into two Union territories, as mentioned in the Bill. The Bill has been passed in that House and is yet to be passed(as of Aug 5, 2019) by the Lok Sabha. It then needs to be assented by the President to turn it into an Act of Parliament. Afterwards, it then has to be published for general public information in the Gazette of India mentioning the date with which the Act would take effect.

Why was this done, [and] what are reasons for doing this[?]

Statement of Objects and Reasons for the Bill mentions:

The Ladakh Division of the State of Jammu and Kashmir has a large area but is sparsely populated with a very difficult terrain. There has been a long pending demand of people of Ladakh, to give it the status of a Union Territory to enable them to realise their aspirations. The Union Territory of Ladakh will be without Legislature.

Further, keeping in view the prevailing internal security situation, fuelled by cross border terrorism in the existing State of Jammu and Kashmir, a separate Union Territory for Jammu and Kashmir is being created. The Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir will be with legislature.

For J&k, here is the plan from the Home Minister Amit Shah:

Full state status will be restored to Jammu and Kashmir at appropriate time, when normalcy returns.

The Leh and Kargil districts are being clubbed together as UT of Ladakh. Given their wiki pages, the combined area would be around 59,196 sq. Km covering a mere population of ~2.75 lakhs (0.275 million), which does not seem to be in need of a statehood. Besides, the region borders China which has boundary disputes with India, so a UT is justified from all fronts.

To put it simply, UT of Ladakh is from strategic point of view, while UT of J&k is from security point of view, given the region's links with terrorism.

  • I am clear about the Ladakh UT status. Coming back to Jammu and Kashmir if Home Minister Amit Shah has promised to restore statehood to J&K after normalcy returns then why not impose presidents rule. What was the need to declare them as Union Territories, that a split one. Why not a single territory, I just want to understand, is it that Jammu and Kashmir was divided based on demographics.
    – Up-In-Air
    Commented Aug 6, 2019 at 13:08
  • President's rule under Art 356 is a constitutional provision which is activated only when a state govt cannot be run in accordance with the provisions of the government. Further, it requires approval of extension every six months with recommendation from Election Commission after a year that why the rule should stay, but in any case cannot stay more than three years at all. Also, the Kashmir and Jammu region are heavily populated and politicised so they demand self-government naturally. It would be uncontitutional than.
    – Firelord
    Commented Aug 6, 2019 at 14:04
  • 1
    ... To deny them the opportunity to self rule by a regional govt. BTW, Home minister's promise has no statutory value, so it could just be a tactic to pacify opposition that statehood would be given once normalcy returns, notwithstanding that nobody knows what Mr Shah means by normalcy, how and when it would be assessed, and so on. Also, it is not divided on the based of demography as otherwise, Hindu majority Jammu would have been divided from Muslim majority Kashmir too.
    – Firelord
    Commented Aug 6, 2019 at 14:05

********** Sensitive Topic, hence refraining from using names.*********

The Article 370 gave special status to J&K, which ensured, no Indians from rest of the states allowed to buy property in J&K, and many other reasons. This wasn't fair. The citizens of J&K could purchase property elsewhere in India, however, the inverse isn't allowed.

J&K saw a mass migration of people of certain religion to other states to live in a better place as the J&K had been in conflicts. This caused a convergence of people from the other religion in the state. Government's spending was consistent to meet the needs, however, the state was never stable. The nation paid to cover J&K costs, but still, people moved out.

Today, If, democratically chosen, J&K might prefer to join other nation, but this decision is not fair, because Majority of its citizens relocated to elsewhere seeking stability, hence the biasedness. Even, the local government might oppose joining india, despite being paid by India. The democratic vote, if any, is not at all fair, hence the decision was made to convert it into UT's, to restore the lost balance, which the rest of the nation has.

Why only UT's?

Union Territories give certain tax benefits (and security, etc) and aid in reducing the cost of living. This benefit may encourage others (Companies/Citizens from other states) to take advantage and might move to J&K, essentially restoring the lost balance.

Also, Critical decessions are made by those, who stand by the interests of the whole nation and not by those, who are biased.

Nation's security in deterring poachers from other nations is essential and could be done effectively, only if the state is secured. Now, the state is burning and those who are deterring poachers (army/police) are being burned by poachers and residents, from both sides. This had been destabilizing in the region and often gave a significant advantage to the poachers, essentially encouraging poachers.

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