United Maharajadom Charter

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The Charter and Constitution of the Union of the Rajadoms of Jammu and Kashmir of 1921

  • PREAMBLE

The Rajadom of Jammu and the Rajadom of Kashmir, desirous of establishing a new constitutional order in which they will conduct their internal interests autonomously and their common interests on a basis of equality and good will, have resolved by decision of their respective legislaturesto adopt this Charter and Constitution for The United Maharajadom of Jammu and Kashmir (hereinafter, the UMJK) as follows:

  • Article 1.
  1. The Two Rajadoms of Jammu and Kashmir shall, upon the 1st day of July next ensuing, that is of 1922, and forever after, be united by one Personal Union to be called The United Maharajdom of Jammu and Kashmir.
  2. The Ensigns Armorial of the said Personal Union shall be such as His Royal Majesty shall think fit, and used in all Flags, Banners, Standards and Ensigns.
  • Article 2
  1. The Maharaja, as Head of State and Head of Government, shall exercise executive power in the UMJK and over the two Rajadoms. He shall be inviolable. The Ministers shall be responsible for all executive decisions and policies.
  2. Legislative power in UMJK affairs shall be exercised by the legislative bodies of the individual Rajadoms.
  • Article 3
  1. The Succession to the Monarchy of the UMJK shall continue by right of equal primogeniture to the legitimate Hindu descendants of the late Raja Gulab Singh.
  2. All persons of other faiths or marrying persons of other faiths shall be excluded from and forever incapable of inheriting, possessing, or enjoying the Crown of the UMJK.
  3. The Maharaja shall reside during the summer in the Royal Capital of Srinagar and during the winter in the Royal Capital of Jammu.
  • Article 4
  1. Within the UMJK, the constitutional organization of the Two Rajadoms is set forth in their respective Constitutions.
  2. Each of the Two Rajadoms shall promote the realization of fundamental human rights and freedoms, legal certainty and good governance.
  3. The safeguarding of such rights and freedoms, legal certainty and good governance shall be the concern of the UMJK.
  • Article 5
  1. The affairs of the UMJK shall be conducted in cooperation by the Two Rajadoms in accordance with the provisions of this Charter and Constitution.
  2. Wherever possible the Legislatures of the Two Rajadoms shall participate in the conduct of these affairs.
  3. The Two Rajadoms shall take account of the provisions of this Charter and Constitution in their legislation and administration.
  • Article 6
  1. A Privy Council of four persons, consisting of two members appointed by the Maharaja and one member each appointed by the legislatures of the Two Rajadoms. The Privy Council is responsible for all matters pertaining to the privileges and conduct of the Maharaja and the royal family; rendering advice to the Maharaja on matters concerning the Throne and the royal family; all matters pertaining to crown properties; and any other matter as may be commanded by the Maharaja.
  • Article 7
  1. A Council of Ministers of the UMJK shall be composed of the Ministers appointed by the Maharaja and the Ministers Plenipotentiary appointed by the Governments of the Two Rajadoms.
  • Article 8
  1. The Ministers Plenipotentiary shall act in the name of the Governments of their Rajadoms, which shall appoint or remove them. They must be citizens of their respective Rajadoms.
  2. The Government of the relevant Rajadom shall provide for a deputy for the Minister Plenipotentiary in the event of absence. The provisions of this Charter and Constitution with regard to the Minister Plenipotentiary shall apply mutatis mutandis to his deputy.
  • Article 9
  1. Before assuming office the Minister Plenipotentiary shall, in the presence of the Maharaja, take an oath of allegiance to the Maharaja and to the Charter. The form of the oath or promise shall be prescribed by order in council for the UMJK.
  • Article 10
  1. The Minister Plenipotentiary shall participate in the deliberations of the Council of Ministers and of the permanent boards and special committees of the Council whenever United Maharajadom affairs are discussed which affect the Rajadom in question.
  2. The Governments of the Two Rajadoms shall be entitled to appoint, if they see reason to do so in relation to a particular matter, a Minister, in addition to the Minister Plenipotentiary, to participate with an advisory vote in the deliberations referred to in the preceding paragraph.
  • Article 11
  1. Provisions regarding United Maharajadom affairs shall be laid down by Law or, if appropriate, by order in council for the UMJK. Such an Act or order in council may instruct or allow other organs to lay down further rules. In the case of the Two Rajadoms, the appropriate organs shall be the legislatures.
  2. If the regulation of a matter is not to be effected solely by Law, it may be effected by order in council for the UMJK.
  • Article 12
  1. The Maharaja shall forward Bills for United Maharajadom Law at the same time as they are introduced to the legislatures of the Two Rajadoms.
  • Article 13
  1. The legislature of the Rajadom in which the legislation is to apply shall be empowered, before the Bill is publicly debated, to examine the Bill and to issue a written report thereon, if necessary within a fixed time-limit.
  • Article 14
  1. The Minister Plenipotentiary of the Rajadom in which the legislation is to apply shall be afforded the opportunity to attend the debates on the Bill and to furnish such information as he considers desirable.
  2. The legislature of the Rajadom in which the legislation is to apply may decide to designate, for the purposes of the debate on a particular Bill, one or more special delegates who shall likewise be empowered to attend the debates and furnish information.
  3. The Ministers Plenipotentiary and the special delegates shall be immune from any legal proceedings in respect of anything they say in or submit in writing to the meetings of the National Assemblies.
  4. The Ministers Plenipotentiary and the special delegates shall be empowered to propose amendments to a Bill during the proceedings in the legislatures.
  • Article 15
  1. Before a final vote is taken on any UMJK Bill in the legislatures, the Minister Plenipotentiary of the Rajadom in which the legislation is to apply shall have the opportunity to express his opinion on the Bill. If the Minister Plenipotentiary states his opposition to the proposal, he may request the legislature at the same time to postpone the vote till the following meeting. If, after the Minister Plenipotentiary has stated his opposition to the Bill, the legislature adopts it with a majority of less than three-fifths of the number of votes cast, the proceedings shall be suspended and the Council of Ministers shall consider the Bill further.
  2. If the meetings of the legislature are being attended by special delegates, the power referred to in paragraph 1 shall devolve upon the delegate designated for the purpose by the representative assembly.
  • Article 16
  1. The Government of the UMJK shall ensure the publication of laws and orders in council for the UMJK, which shall appear in the official bulletin of the Rajadom where the legislation is to apply. The Governments of the Rajadoms shall lend all the assistance necessary to that end.
  2. Laws and orders in council for the UMJK shall enter into force on the date determined therein or pursuant thereto.
  3. The terms of the publication of laws and orders in council for the UMJK shall state that the provisions of the Charter and Constitution for the UMJK have been observed.
  • Article 17
  1. In the event of war or a threat of war or if a threat to or the disturbance of internal peace and order might seriously damage the UMJK's interests, the Maharaja may, to maintain internal or external security, declare any part of the UMJK to be in a state of war or a state of emergency.
  2. How such a declaration shall be made and the ensuing consequences provided for shall be determined by or pursuant to the Law.
  3. Such legislation may determine that, and in what manner, powers of the civil authorities in respect of public order and the police shall be transferred, wholly or in part, authorities shall be subordinate to the military authorities. Whenever possible the Government of the Rajadom concerned shall be consulted with regard to the transfer of powers. Such legislation may depart from provisions relating to the freedom of the press and freedom of association and assembly, and from those relating to the inviolability of dwellings and correspondence.
  4. In an area where in the event of war a state of emergency has been declared, military criminal law and military criminal jurisdiction may be declared wholly or partially applicable to any person, in a manner determined by Law.
  • Article 18
  1. The Citizens of the UMJK shall have full freedom and intercourse of trade and transportation to and from any place within the UMJK.
  • Article 19
  1. All parts of the UMJK shall have the same allowances, encouragements and drawbacks, and be under the same prohibitions, restrictions and regulations of trade and liable to the same customs and duties on import and export.
  • Article 20
  1. The coin shall be of the same standard and value, throughout the UMJK, as now in Kashmir, and shall be called the United Maharajadom Rupee (UMR).
  2. A newly created Ministry of Finance shall create a National Bank to control and monitor the financial system of the UMJK.
  3. The Ministry of Finance shall also establish a Privy Purse to be financed by both Rajadoms.
  4. A Mint shall be continued in Jammu under the same rules as the Mint in Kashmir.
  5. The present Officers of these Mints shall continue to be subject to such regulations and alterations as His Royal Majesty and His Successors, or the individual Parliaments shall think fit.
  6. Likewise, the postal system shall be of the same regulations, throughout the UMJK, as now in Kashmir.
  • Article 21
  1. The same Weights and Measures shall be used throughout the UMJK as are now established in Kashmir.
  • Article 22
  1. The Courts shall remain within each Rajadom as they are now constituted by the Laws of those Rajadoms.
  • Article 23
  1. Judgments given and warrants issued by courts in either of the Two Rajadoms and engrossments of authentic acts issued by them, shall be enforced throughout the UMJK, with due observance of statutory provisions in the Rajadom of enforcement.
  • Article 24
  1. All heritable Offices, Superiorities, heritable Jurisdictions, Offices for life, and Jurisdictions for life shall be reserved to the Owners thereof, as Rights of Property, in the same manner as they are now enjoyed by the Laws of the Two Rajadoms.
  • Article 25
  1. The regular armed forces shall be under a unified command. This force shall be put into effect by a newly created Ministry of Defense to be established by the government of the UMJK.
  • Article 26
  1. A Ministry of the Exterior shall be created to handle diplomatic and other foreign relations of the UMJK.
  • Article 27
  1. A common cabinet, composed of the Ministers of the Exterior, Defense and Finance, shall be responsible to the Maharaja and to the delegations of 20 members each (chosen by the two parliaments), which shall meet to discuss common affairs.
  • Article 28
  1. Expenses for the common Ministries shall be borne equally by the two Rajadoms. These expenses shall be renegotiated and readjusted if necessary, every ten years.
  • Article 29
  1. And matters not regulated by this Charter and Constitution shall be subsequently regulated by Law of the UMJK.
  • Article 30
  1. All Laws and Statutes in either Rajadom so far as they are contrary to, or inconsistent with the Terms of these Articles shall cease and become void, and shall be so declared to be by the respective Parliaments of the said Rajadoms.
  • Article 31
  1. Amendments to this Charter and Constitution shall be effected by law.
  2. A Bill for an amendment shall not be approved by the Maharaja until it has been approved by the legislatures of the Two Rajadoms in two readings. If the draft is passed at the first reading by two-thirds of the votes cast, it shall be deemed approved forthwith. The second reading shall take place within one month after the Bill has passed the first reading.
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