Linking Article 370 to Hindutva

Shiban Khaibri
Unfortunate for this country and unimpeachable for the Congress party which has some senior leaders in it, bent upon axing the feet of the party itself, already having turned numb on account of second successive defeat in country’s general elections which concluded in May this year , the other one being in the year 2014. One of the main reasons for the drubbings of Congress in 2014 as per the findings of the four member committee headed by the senior Congress leader and former union Defence Minister A. K. Antony was .”The Party’s minority appeasement policy proved counterproductive, while frequent statements of some Congress leaders on the Muslim quota antagonised and alienated the majority community, the minority community too doubted Congress’s intentions arguing that there was a huge gap between programmes announced by the UPA and their actual delivery on the ground .” Fighting 2014 elections on the plank of( so called )”Secularism versus communalism” hurt the Congress that was identified as pro- minority”, was what was found by the committee. Before constituting of the committee or the panel headed by Antony, for the sake of absolving Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi, President and Vice President of the Party respectively, former Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh too got absolved in the process. The panel, however, insisted that the findings should, at least be circulated among the leadership and the workers of the Party.
Antony’s advice was given somewhat diluted heed in 2019 and slightly before during campaigning for Rajasthjan, Madha Pradesh and Chhatisgarh Vidhan Sabha elections when Rahul Gandhi had in his own wisdom or heeding to ‘expert’ advice , visit each and every known Hindu temple to pay obeisance and knowingly under media glaze, followed by wearing the sacred Janevo too and declaring himself as Brahman with Dattatarya Kaul ‘gotra’ and whatever, was not an attempt in a willy-nilly fashion but an exercise to go in for the “risk management” theory to temporary leave the traditional appeasement policy and to adopt , again temporarily, the Hindu projection policy only and only for votes. Even in that ‘converted’ political thinking, the proverbial old habits die hard manifested in Kamal Nath’s openly chest beating on November 21, 2018 about the consequences of “if 90 percent of Muslim voters did not vote for us, then it would be a major loss for us”. Not only this, the way secularism is traditionally treated by them, the same Senior Congress leader earlier addressed a delegation of Muslims,” The RSS will instigate you , we will deal with them later, but till the day of elections, you have to tolerate them.” If that was not communalising elections to the state Assembly, what was that anything else ? The problem is as to why the religious, communal, sectarian angles are resorted to and then blames laid on the RSS and other organisations. Another important question is as to why Congress leaders refrain from and even remotely too, do not think of criticising, let alone severely berating and deriding, terror organisations like the Jaish-e- Mohammed, Hizub-ul- Mujahdin, Jamat-ul- Dawa and others who have clear cut jihadi terror designs based on religious bigotry and fanaticism against this country and whom in the process , wants the party appease by routinely and habitually continue to attack the RSS?
P. Chidambaram , Mani Shanker Ayer, Rahul Gandhi , Gulam Nabi Azad, Adhir Ranjan Chouwdhry, Priyanka Vadra and a few other leaders of Congress party may criticise to the extent of attacking each and every policy of the present BJP led NDA Government , even its leader if that is what ‘they’ call real democracy and freedom of expression , no qualms about that. The question, however, is as to why should in the process, blatant transgression of established principles take place which land at defaming the country or creating ill will against and project Hindu community in bad colour. Why is it that a senior leader of the Party Gulam Nabi termed abrogation of Article 370 as “BJP government has cut off India’s head and weakened the country” ? He further termed the much awaited move of the Government as “finishing off the identity and the existence of Jammu and Kashmir”. That is simply a wild allegation, an unwarranted insinuation and unjustified imputation. Has he ever calculated as to how much a role did this Article 370 and ‘special status’ play in alienating majority of Kashmiri Muslims from the mainstream and how it progressively sowed the seeds of exclusiveness , radicalisation and created a fertile ground for Pakistan to promote terror and violence against this country? How was the abrogation going to result in making Kashmir a Palestine and how was the abrogation done un-constitutionally ?
Well, was not the so called “identity” of Jammu and Kashmir finished in 1989-90 when the indigenous inhabitants of Kashmir , the innocent Kashmiri Pandits were hounded out lock, stock and barrel in 1990 for no “fault” and did not the same Gulam Nabi on August 3 in a press briefing in presence of senior leaders like Chidambaram, Dr. Karan Singh, Anand Sharma , Ambika Soni and others, after 30 long years where one full generation of the community has perished in the hope of returning to roots , rub salt on their wounds by saying that the then Governor Jagmohan was “responsible” for their exodus who for the purpose , had provided SRTC buses and trucks to the (“peacefully and comfortably and fearlessly living”) Kashmiri Pandits to leave Kashmir . None from the other very senior Congress leaders sitting on the dais as referred to in the foregoing lines , felt inclined to contest his accusations or advise him not to distort things to that extent, which is shocking. On the contrary, Chidambaram who had been union Home Minister said, “Union Home Ministry is up to some misadventure” while Dr. Karan Singh had charged the centre of spreading a sense of panic and fear, as “everybody there is in a state of shock and panic”.
And which identity , by the way Congress and other “Secular” parties are talking about except the hard core radicalised identity while in the same breath, accusing the BJP to be communal . The same premise is what the entire “Hurriyat movement” led by the Pakistani hawk Syed Ali Shah Geelani and others are wholly relying on. If identity is referred to only being a Muslim majority , then should the same yard stick be applied to all those states which had majorities of one or the other religious groups even at district levels to have the ‘special status’ conferred on them, Where shall the integrity, sovereignty and unity of the country go?
Not only this, the former Home Minister, Chidambaram on August 12 in a public meeting in Chennai said that the “Union Government revoked Jammu and Kashmir’s special status because it is a Muslim – dominated state and would have not done so if Hindus were in majority there.” Should the Congress Party stoop so low now as to brazenly communalise the sensitive issue?. On the contrary, the party should be obliged and indebted to the present dispensation for having rectified the big mistake which their party had committed decades ago and taken constitutional and parliamentary democratic recourse towards total integration of Jammu and Kashmir. Why should the old party look at every issue from the prism of “Hindu – Muslim” angle even after having touched the lowest number of seats in the election consecutively for two elections and such a policy of theirs was bound to boomerang and result in no gains politically and electorally for them, perhaps in the near future also.
It is astounding that Pakistani media , particularly electronic, should boast of the “support of some Congress , communist and other likeminded parties in India” and writers (whom they name) as, according to them, they endorse their line and views . Who is , as such , getting exposed internally – not Modi and who is getting exposed internationally – again not Modi and who must remorsefully introspect – still again not Modi .


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