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New Delhi, Dec 12 – The Parliament on Monday passed the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation (Amendment) Bill, 2023 and the Jammu and Kashmir Reservation (Amendment) Bill, 2023 with the Rajya Sabha clearing the two bills by voice vote.

The Lok Sabha had passed the bills on December 6 in the ongoing Winter session of Parliament.

The opposition parties walked out from the Upper House during Home Minister Amit Shah’s reply to the discussion on the two bills.

The Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation (Amendment) Bill, 2023 proposes to increase the total number of seats in the J&K legislative assembly from 107 to 114, of which seven would be reserved for scheduled caste members and nine for legislators from scheduled tribes. Earlier there were two nominated members in the Assembly, now there will be five.

The Bill provides for nominating two members, one of whom shall be a woman, from the community of “Kashmiri Migrants” and one member from “Displaced Persons from Pakistan occupied Jammu and Kashmir”, to the Legislative Assembly of the Union territory of Jammu and Kashmir.

On the other hand, the Jammu and Kashmir Reservation (Amendment) Bill, 2023 proposes to replace the phrase “weak and under-privileged classes” with “other backward classes”.

Replying to the discussion on the bills, Shah hailed the Supreme Court decision upholding abrogation of Article 370.

Shah said the Modi government has tried to destroy the terror ecosystem and targetted terror financing. He said Article 370 promoted separatism in Jammu and Kashmir giving rise to terrorism.

The Minister took on the opposition saying they had committed mistakes for 40 years but now wants the Modi government to fix the problem in four years.

He also attacked the country’s first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru alleging that J&K’s accession was delayed due to him.

Shah said the Modi government was committed to ensuring justice for the displaced Kashmiri people.

Stating that history spares none, he said that he, PM Modi and BJP will not run away from owning responsibility for abrogating Article 370.

The Home Minister listed out various development works progressing in Jammu and Kashmir and shared statistics to drive home the point that J&K was witnessing development in all areas.

“Today, the future of youth is not black. ….The youth who used to be involved in stone-pelting have now laptops in their hands,” Shah said during his reply to the discussion.