Apex court questions J&K Bar on accession

Apex court questions J&K Bar on accession
The Supreme Court on Wednesday said it was "slightly shocked" with the claims made by the Jammu and Kashmir Bar Association, questioning the accession of the state to the Union. The bar association also maintained that all the elections held in the state were rigged.

A three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra also said that it was a "mistake" on the part of the court to have asked the lawyers' body to point out the reasons for the unrest, large-scale violence and protests in the state.

The court made these observations after Solicitor General Ranjit Kumar questioned the stand taken by the bar association in an additional affidavit filed against the high court order pertaining to the use of pellet guns by security forces.

"They are trying to raise the issue of accession. They say every election in the state was rigged and none of the polls held since 1947 inspired the confidence of the people," Kumar said, reading out from the affidavit.

He said the bar association explained its position after the court sought its response on the reasons for the unrest in the state. The court had earlier said the association was a "responsible and respectable body" and must help in finding out ways to deal with the situation.

"We are slightly shocked with that. How is the affidavit relevant in the present matter? If the court wanted to know their stand, it was a mistake," the bench, also comprising Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud, said.

Kumar said the matter should be left to the high court to decide as a fresh standard operating procedure has been prepared for the security forces on the use of pellet guns this year. The court, however, decided to consider their plea against the use of pellet guns on January 18.
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