June 30, 2016 2:23:19 am
Bharatiya Janata Party president Amit Shah Wednesday blamed Jawaharlal Nehru’s “historic blunder” for the current impasse in Jammu and Kashmir, and criticised the then Congress leadership’s role during the later part of the freedom struggle, which, he said, led to Partition.
Referring to the declaration of truce in 1948 when Pakistan-backed tribal raiders were being repulsed in Kashmir, Shah said the problem in the border state would not exist today but for that decision.
“Suddenly, without any reason — the reason is not known even today — truce was declared. Never has any leader of the country made such a historic blunder. If Jawaharlalji had not declared a ceasefire at that time, the Kashmir issue would not have existed,” Shah said at an event to commemorate Jan Sangh founder Syama Prasad Mookerjee.
According to the BJP chief, this decision was taken to improve “one’s (Nehru’s) personal image,” and, because of that, a part of Kashmir is now occupied by Pakistan.
The BJP chief also claimed that Partition could have been prevented had the Congress leadership of the time not been in a hurry. He alleged that “the entire Congress leadership was anxious” since “all of them were ageing”, indicating that they were in a hurry to be in positions of power.
Addressing the event at Nehru Memorial Museum and Library here, Tripura Governor and former West Bengal unit BJP president Tathagata Roy raised questions over the circumstances leading to Mookerjee’s death in Kashmir, where he had gone to participate in a protest, in 1953. Roy questioned Nehru’s handling of the events and the decision not to conduct an inquiry into the death. He also criticised the fact that the then PM did not visit Mookerjee during his confinement in Kashmir.
Shah claimed that Mookerjee was kept in an inadequately equipped safe-house near Srinagar, and was not provided proper medical facilities.
According to Shah, a “large section” of the population believes that Mookerjee was murdered, and the truth would have emerged had there been a probe. He added that the Jan Sangh founder had played a key role in raising the concerns of Hindus in Bengal. “If Kolkata is (today) a part of India, and one person has to be given credit for it, it is Syama Prasad Mookerji,” he said.
Stating that history has not done justice to the “patriot” and “eminent educationist” that Mookerjee was, the BJP president said, “It is unfortunate that first the British, and later the Leftists distorted the history of this country.”
According to Shah, it is because of Mookerjee that permits are not needed to enter Kashmir now, and the titles of Prime Minister and President are not used separately for the state.
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