Instrument of Accession lodged with National Archives

While the Jammu and Kashmir government had refused to divulge details about the much disputed “Instrument of Accession” (IoA) stating the disclosure would “prejudicially affect the sovereignty and integrity of India,” the Centre has replied to an RTI application filed by Advocate Irfan Lone saying the historically significant document was transferred from the Home Ministry to the National Archives of India (NAI) in 2010. Even when confirmed by the NAI that the availability was not an issue (as claimed by the J&K government), the validity and credibility of the document have been debated for the better half of the last century and the document has been a bone of contention between Kashmiris and the Central government for decades some claiming that the IoA was never signed.  Aaliya Khan