India now officially has 28 States and 9 Union Territories. Jammu and Kashmir state ceased to exist from midnight, giving way to the UT of ‘Jammu and Kashmir’ and the UT of ‘Ladakh’ under the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Act 2019.
Radha Krishna Mathur was sworn in as the first Lieutenant Governor of Ladakh. The oath was administered by Chief Justice of J&K High Court Gita Mittal in Leh.
Later in the day, Chief Justice Mittal administered oath to Girish Chandra Murmu as first Lieutenant Governor of Jammu and Kashmir at Raj Bhawan.
The President’s rule imposed since December 2018 has been revoked by an official notification today. However, since the provisions with respect to the legislature in J&K have not been effected yet, both UTs would continue to be administered by the President for now. J&K would eventually get a Chief Minister and Legislature.
Some of the consequential highlights are as below:
- The High Court of Jammu and Kashmir with its existing judges would continue to operate for both the UTs.
- The central legislations specifically excluding the erstwhile state would now apply to the UTs.
- The central legislations which were applicable to the erstwhile State immediately before the appointed day (October 31, 2019) shall continue to apply to the Union Territory of Jammu & Kashmir and the Union Territory of Ladakh, in addition to the laws mentioned in Table-I of the Fifth Schedule.
- The Jammu and Kashmir Bovine Breeding (Regulation of Production, Sale of Bovine Semen and Artificial Insemination) Act, 2018, the Jammu and Kashmir Single Window (Industrial Investment and Business Facilitation) Act, 2018, the Jammu and Kashmir Metropolitan Region Development Authorities Act, 2018 and the Jammu and Kashmir National Law University Act, 2018 shall continue to apply to the two Union Territories until altered, repealed or amended by a competent Legislature or other competent authority.
- The Jammu and Kashmir Goods and Services Tax Act, 2017 shall be applicable to the Union Territory of Jammu & Kashmir and the Union Territory Goods and Services Tax Act, 2017 shall be applicable to the Union Territory of Ladakh.
- The Union Government is entitled to adapt or modify any law made applicable to the successor Union Territories within one year from today.
- All official posts under the Constitution of Jammu and Kashmir and appointments and delegations, bye-laws, schemes, licences, certificates remain secured and deemed to be constituted under respective provisions of the Central legislations.
— India Legal Bureau