The Supreme Court today asked National Conference leader Mohammad Akbar Lone, the lead petitioner challenging the abrogation of Article 370, to swear allegiance to the Constitution of India in writing.
Mr Lone was asked to file an affidavit tomorrow after the Centre’s top law officer alleged that he had raised pro-Pakistan slogans in the Jammu and Kashmir assembly in 2018.
The Supreme Court has ordered Mr Lone to file an affidavit that he owes allegiance to the Constitution of India, and opposes secessionist forces and terrorism in the former state.
“We want to have it from Akbar Lone that he unconditionally accepts that Jammu and Kashmir is an integral part of India and that he abides by and owes allegiance to the Constitution of India,” a five-judge bench headed by Chief Justice DY Chandrachud said.
The bench, which also included Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul, Sanjiv Khanna, BR Gavai, and Surya Kant, said that it would seek a statement from Mr Lone when it is his turn to present his rejoinder arguments.
“These statements coming from senior leaders have their own effect. If no apology is given, it would encourage others. This will have an effect on steps taken to bring normalcy in Jammu and Kashmir,” said Solicitor General Tushar Mehta.