THERE CAN be no peace in Kashmir Valley as long as the BJP-PDP coalition government are in power in the state, former Union Minister of Finance P Chidambaram said on Sunday. The Congress leader was addressing journalists at the Pune Union of Working Journalists (PUWJ). He said the PDP and BJP belonged to different ideological poles and they have come together only for power.
“The situation in Kashmir was relatively calmer between 2010-2014. It became volatile in 2015. And it’s a failure of the central as well as the coalition government in the state. The Congress has always believed that solution to Kashmir issue can only come from talks. The present regime, however, seems to be seeking to address the issue using military power. It wouldn’t succeed,” he added.
He also panned the Narendra Modi-led central government over the implementation of Goods and Services Tax (GST). Pointing out that what the Centre has brought into effect can’t even be called GST, he said businesses will suffer greatly because of this move (GST). “GST implemented by the Modi government is a form of tax terrorism,” added the leader.
“The GST was first proposed by the Congress, and was supposed to be implemented by 2010. When Pranab Mukherjee was the finance minister, he had proposed an amendment for implementation of the GST. When I became the FM, I, too, had presented the bill in Parliament as well as to the council of ministers. At that time, the BJP had opposed it. They became wise post 2014 and decided to implement it,” said Chidambaram.
Coming down heavily on the central government over cases of lynching by alleged “cow protectors,” he said, “Those who take the law into their hands, believe that nothing will happen to them as their government is in Delhi.”
He called ‘mob lynching’ the worst indication of deterioration of internal security in the country. “PM denouncing cow vigilantes and mob lynching incidents is not enough. There’s a need for action. How did the mob get this kind of confidence? It is because these mobs believe that nothing will happen to them, as their government is in Delhi. That is what gives them courage to indulge into mob lynching,” he added.