While Supreme Court of India has of late invited more brickbats than applauses for its current decisions, a bench of the same on 14th December 2016 and then on 16th December 2016, restored our faith in the judiciary, by not only quashing the plea of some people to challenge the Indian Air Force order of disallowing long beards for religious purposes , but also upholding the sovereignty of India over the autonomous state of Jammu and Kashmir, after J & K High Court tried to sow seeds of segregation by challenging the authority of INDIA in dealing with the militancy in the war torn state.
In the first case, Mohammad Zubair, who was an Air Force trainee, was dismissed for disobeying the rule of the Indian Air Force, as per the Armed Forces Regulations 1964, under which the apex court held that under the Armed Forces Regulations of 1964 the “touchstone for being allowed to grow one’s hair or to retain a beard is where there is a religious command which prohibits either the hair being cut or a beard being shaved.”
Mohammad Zubair, who had appealed in the apex court on the grounds that he be allowed to keep his beard, on the grounds that Sikh personnel were allowed to do so, to which the Air Force countered that keeping a beard was not an essential practice in Islam, unlike the Sikh religion. As per the codifications, even the Sikhs are allowed only trimmed beards.
The court had sought an opinion from senior advocate Salman Khurshid, who said growing a beard was only “desirable” in Islam.
Further, the Defence Ministry’s 2003 notification clarified that only those Muslim personnel who sported a beard along with moustache at the time of commissioning (prior to January 1, 2002), would be allowed to retain them.
If this was enough, Supreme Court of India quashed the ruling of Jammu & Kashmir High Court, maintaining that the sovereignty of the state of Jammu & Kashmir was not outside the scope of INDIA. According to a bench headed by Justice Kurian Joseph and Justice Rohington Nariman, who recorded, that “It is clear that the state of Jammu & Kashmir has no vestige of sovereignty outside the Constitution of India and its own Constitution, which is subordinate to the Constitution of India… they (residents of state) are governed first by the Constitution of India and also by the Constitution of Jammu & Kashmir,”
The bench also said, “It is necessary to reiterate that Section 3 of the Constitution of Jammu & Kashmir, which was framed by a Constituent Assembly elected on the basis of universal adult franchise, makes a ringing declaration that the State of Jammu & Kashmir is and shall be an integral part of the Union of India. And this provision is beyond the pale of amendment,” the judges said.
The Armed Forces of India, compared to the rest of the nation, have displayed supreme unity, regardless of any social barrier, whether caste or creed. Why should the malice of religious dogma ruin this confluence of discipline and patriotism? The Armed Forces of India have their own dress code and rules for proper maintenance of the aspiring officers in their breed. It would be better, if the cannibal politicians stay away from this pristine tradition with their dirty politics, or else, the armed forces know better ways of pulling up their socks.
This is not the end, the Supreme Court order on the state of Jammu & Kashmir is more than welcome, and given the wicked seeds of segregation and terrorism that the intellectual terrorists are desperately sowing into the minds of the innocent denizens of Kashmir Valley (I’m excluding all the terrorists with an evil eye on the state). I agree that Jammu & Kashmir is a ‘special’ state, but in no way it’s an absolutely sovereign state. Jammu & Kashmir as a state is an integral part of the Union of India, and it should remain that way.
At a time, when terrorism is being whacked the way it should by our gallant security forces, and the maverick move of demonetization has brought peace once again in the Kashmir Valley, in no way should the separatists and the intellectual terrorists be allowed to set up their hate factories in this beautiful heaven again. If for this specific reason, the liberals feel that Supreme Court is being intolerant, then yes, Supreme Court is intolerant, and it should be so.