Nehru’s Attempt To Appease Sheikh Abdullah Was Responsible For Including Article 370 In The Constitution: Chouhan

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New Delhi: Former Madhya Pradesh chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan blamed the country’s first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru for including Article 370 in the Constitution to “appease” Sheikh Abdullah, the second chief minister of Jammu and Kashmir.

Addressing a press conference in Goa, Chouhan also blamed former PM Nehru for ‘delaying’ the liberation of Goa and said that he had a lot to answer for.

“When the Kashmir accession treaty was signed, there was no demand for special status. Jammu and Kashmir had merged with India like other states. Because of (Nehru’s) fondness for Sheikh Abdullah this section was included. I am surprised at Nehru’s perspective sometimes,” Chouhan said.

“Due to the one-sided truce, PoK has been created. If Nehru had waited for some time, all of Kashmir would be with India. It was Nehru’s historic failure. Because of Article 370, terrorism was emboldened. The country’s unity was broken and because of some selfish Kashmiri leaders, who filled their houses, common Kashmiris did not benefit from Article 370. Two-three families only prospered,” he said.

It is unclear what Chouhan was referring to as the Instrument of Accession clearly stipulates the terms and conditions by which the princely state of Jammu and Kashmir acceded to India.

“Because of Congress and Nehru’s leadership, the Portuguese continued in Goa for so many years. People from Goa were agitating. Goa was an integral part of India. Such circumstances arise because of wrong priorities. I believe that the manner in which Goa has progressed, Jammu and Kashmir too will develop. Terrorism will be eradicated along with poverty,” Singh said.

Reacting to the statements, Congress president Girish Chodankar accused the BJP of spreading ignorance.

“It is easy for them to make statements standing here today. They do not know what the situation was back then because their parent organization was not involved in the freedom movement. Even today they are looking at the issue from a British perspective,” Chodankar said.

“As regards Goa’s freedom movement, Chouhan before he returns to Bhopal should meet Goa’s freedom fighters, many of whom are still alive if he really wants to understand why Goa had to wait for 14 years,” Chodankar said.

 

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