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Lok Sabha passes Jammu and Kashmir Reservation Bill, J&K Reorganisation (Amendment) Bill

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The Lok Sabha on Wednesday passed the Jammu and Kashmir Reservation (Amendment) Bill, 2023, and the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation (Amendment) Bill, 2023, which were introduced in the Parliament in July this year.

The Jammu and Kashmir Reservation (Amendment) Bill, 2023 would modify the Jammu and Kashmir Reservation Act, 2004, which governs reservations in jobs and admissions to professional institutions for members of Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes, and socially and educationally backward classes.

The key features of the amended Bill include replacement of the phrase “weak and under-privileged classes” with “other backward classes” as declared by the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir. The bill has eliminated the original definition of weak and under-privileged classes.

The Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation (Amendment) Bill, 2023 has amended the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Act, 2019, which facilitated the reorganisation of the erstwhile state into the Union Territories of Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh.

After the passage of this Bill, the total number of seats in the Jammu and Kashmir Legislative Assembly have increased from 83 to 90, of which seven would be reserved for the Scheduled Caste members and nine seats for legislators from Scheduled Tribes.

It further gave power to the Lieutenant Governor to nominate up to two members from the Kashmiri migrant community to the Legislative Assembly, with one nominee being a woman. Additionally, one member representing displaced persons from Pakistan-occupied Jammu and Kashmir may be nominated.

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