The controversy that erupted over Article 370 Tuesday following comments by Minister of State in PMO Jitendra Singh seeking debate on it has grown into a full blown war of words. The MoS had, however, later clarified that he was “misquoted”.
On Wednesday, reacting to Omar Abdullah’s remarks that either J&K won’t be part of India or Article 370, which gra-nts special status to the state, will still exist, senior RSS leader Ram Madhav said the state will always be a part of India with or without the provision.
Madhav asked whether the CM thought the state was his “parental estate”. “J&K won’t b part of India? Is Omar thinking it’s his parental estate? 370 or no 370 J&K has been n will always b an integral part of India,” Madhav tweeted.
Omar reacted by saying he never said J&K had been his parental estate but he was citizen of the state and he had the right to speak about his rights.
Omar said any move to abrogate Article 370 will be dangerous and would reopen the debate on state’s accession to India. “They (BJP) cannot abrogate Article 370 till the Constituent Assembly is recalled. The Constituent Assembly approved accession of J&K to India. If you want to raise the question once again, then you need to bring the Constituent Assembly and then we will talk,” Omar said in Srinagar.
J&K’s main opposition PDP said Article 370 could not be touched and that any change in it would mean giving people of Jammu and Kashmir a chance to “re-negotiate” its relations with New Delhi.
“It (Article 370) can not be touched. If you touch it, you will have to go back to the people (of J&K) and ask them for their decision,” said PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti. “Is the BJP ready for that?”
The Congress on its part said the “divisive agenda” of the BJP is coming to the fore. It said the remarks were a “carefully orchestrated attempt” at polarising the electorate ahead of Assembly elections in states.
“It has become clear that all the rhetoric and all the camouflage about so-called ‘development’ (of the BJP) was just that. Barely a day after taking the oath, we have diverse, divisive agendas nakedly out… Each and every comment and statement is deliberate, thou-ght out, orchestrated and intended to politicise and polarise,” Congress spokesperson Abhishek Manu Singhvi said.
The CPI urged the BJP-led government to not take any “hasty” decision on the issue and termed Article 370 as the “lifeline of integration of Kashmir in the Indian union”.
“The Constitution should not be meddled according to the whims and fancies of some people. It is a delicate political issue which should be dealt carefully respecting the obligations of the framers of the Constitution,” a CPI statement said.