370 Scrapped: Relief or Worry for Job Opportunities?

In the early hours of Monday, August 5th, BJP President and Home Affairs Minister Amit Shah moved a resolution in Rajya Sabha that all clauses of Article 370 will no longer be applicable to J&K which was followed by a huge uproar in the parliament.” With the abrogation of Article 370, Jammu and Kashmir will now have no separate flag or Constitution, and the tenure of the assembly will be for a period of five years like other states and two union territories in the country, “ the officials said.

With the scrapping of Article 370, there are some key areas of concern that the government has decided to restructure and improve. Firstly, this Bill is to implement a 10% quota for the Economically Weaker Section (EWS) in Jammu and Kashmir. This will allow students from other parts of India to enroll for General Category candidates government jobs and educational institutions. Secondly, this also implies that citizens from all parts can set up businesses, buy land, and settle permanently, thus creating jobs and livelihood for non-natives as well.

Article 370 laid down that except for matters related to defence, foreign affairs, communications and issues specified in the Instrument of Accession of Jammu and Kashmir, Parliament needs the state government’s ratification for all other laws. In its entirety, the ruling party describes the move as a way to mobilize counter-terrorism activities and establishing more educational programs to boost the state employment rate by opening the markets for Pan India commercial players.

But what changes in employment trends in the valley and around does this mean for the residents of J&K and other outsiders? Empirically, the manufacturing sector of the state has remained largely dependent on the state’s cultural expertise in agriculture and handicrafts. With the introduction of the Jammu and Kashmir (Reorganization) Bill, 2019 more privatized companies can enter the market to fulfill the growing needs of the Indian labor market. 

However, the native market’s response to the establishment of foreign and Indian businesses in the context of employment opportunity is still unclear. Whether the residential population copes with simply becoming a new set of consumers or will the Indian economy see the emergence of a new era of homegrown commercialization from the union territories of J&K and Ladakh.