Retrieving PoJK unfinished agenda: Dr Jitendra

Union Minister, Dr Jitendra Singh addressing citizens’ meet at Jammu on Sunday. —Excelsior/Rakesh
Union Minister, Dr Jitendra Singh addressing citizens’ meet at Jammu on Sunday. —Excelsior/Rakesh

‘Cong, NC rattled as myth of Art 370 explodes’

Avtar Bhat
JAMMU, Aug 18: Hitting out at Congress and its Kashmir Centric ally National Conference (NC), Union Minister of State in PMO with Independent charge of North Eastern States, Dr Jitendra Singh today said that both the parties are rattled after the myth of Article 370 has been exploded totally.
Addressing a Citizens’ meet at the BJP Headquarters at Mookerjee Bhavan here, Dr Jitendra Singh while strongly defending the Modi Government for abrogating the controversial Article 370, said the next unfinished agenda for the BJP Government is retrieving PoJK which is under the illegal occupation of Pakistan. He, while referring to joint Parliament resolution of 1994 passed during the P V Narsimha Rao Government, said India is committed to retrieving PoJK from clutches of Pakistan.

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Dr Jitendra Singh said, the Congress and its dynastic allies in Jammu & Kashmir had dominated the political landscape for several decades by claiming that Article 370 was irrevocable and, at the same time, also sought to make the whole world believe that they are the only political option available for running the affairs of Jammu & Kashmir. He said, with Article 370 having been abrogated, the next goal is to retrieve Pak occupied Jammu & Kashmir (PoJK) form the illegal occupation of Pakistan and once again make it a part of the Indian Union.
Dr Jitendra Singh said, besides the setback to development, people of Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh had suffered a huge damage by way of psychological isolation because of Article 370, which prevented them from nourishing themselves with a sense of belongingness like citizens in other parts of India. He said even the then CM Sheikh Mohammed Abdullah had said in State Assembly during February 1981 that Article 370 was a stumbling block in development.
Reiterating that from October 31 onwards, Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh will embark on a new journey as a part of global India, Dr Jitendra Singh said, the benefits of the new arrangement will be realized within months by people across the region, regardless of whether they belong to Jammu, Kashmir or Ladakh, and regardless of whether they are Hindu, Muslim or Sikh. Only a handful of those who are worried about their fate are the ones who had been beneficiaries of 8 to 10 percent voter turn-out in the Valley, which enabled them to perpetuate their dynastic rule for generations together, he said.
The Union Minister, while terming Article 370 a miscarriage of history said it was the great blunder of post independence period. “The people of the State were deprived of their democratic rights because of Article 370 and the State also could not advance on developmental front as this Article proved a big barrier in this regard”.
Instead of doing any good to the people of the State the Article 370 created a sort of psychological isolation, he said, adding three dynasties of the people of the State bore the brunt of this controversial Article. “We had a feeling of special status in sub conscious mind and it acted as a termite in us”, he added.
He said the August 5, 2019 on which the law was passed will go in the history of country a day of redemption,, day of rejuvenation and resurgence.
Dr Jitendra Singh, while turning tables on Opposition parties for saying that no prior consultation was held with them and abrogation was undemocratic as entire process was done in hurry, said when black law of emergency was imposed in the country opposition was not taken into confidence by then PM Indira Gandhi. “She passed the law during a holiday and got it stamped by President of India during mid night when he was fast asleep”.
Dr Jitendra Singh said there was total transparency in our case as we held a debate for two days in Parliament over the issue and every thing was done in a democratic manner.
He said those accusing BJP of making mockery of Vajpayee’s dictum of Insaniyat, (Humanity) Jamhooriyat (democracy) and Kashmiriyat, said “the Insaniyat was murdered by those who were responsible for handing over stones in hands of neighbor’s son and not we”. “Moreover the Kashmiriyat ended on that day when you forced Kashmiri Pandits the aborigines of Valley to leave Kashmir and democracy ended on the day when the people with eight percent votes entered State Legislature and Parliament”, he added.
He said it was Congress party and NC which have exploited the people of State over Article 370 and playing with their sentiments form time to time. They arrested Sheikh in 1953 and sent him to jail outside State where he founded Plebiscite Front. Later they handed over him power in 1975, he added.
He said then Dr Farooq Abdullah was made CM of the State in 1983 and overthrown by installing his brother in-law G M Shah next year. Later again Dr Abdullah was installed as CM under Rajiv -Farooq Accord and in 1987 Assembly elections were rigged which led to present turmoil, he added.
Lambasting those who are over-reacting to preventive detentions made on the eve of Eid and Independence Day, Dr Jitendra Singh said, “On the contrary, we should congratulate the people of Jammu & Kashmir and the administration for ensuring that both the festive occasions passed off peacefully, whereas over the last three decades, each year we have witnessed violence and untoward incidents on these occasions inspite of prolonged spells of curfew and other restrictions”, he added.
Allaying the fears that in the new arrangement, the Government jobs will be taken up by people from other States, Dr Jitendra Singh retorted by asking, had that been the case why couldn’t the people of Jammu & Kashmir living close to the Punjab border got recruitment in Punjab Police or Punjab Civil Services and said, there are rules of recruitment in place in every State and Union Territory.
Dr Jitendra Singh called upon the business community to give up status-quo mindset and let their children avail the opportunity for capacity – building to become a part of global India, which is heading towards 5 – Trillion Dollar economy.
BJP State president Ravinder Raina in his address accused Jawahar Lal Nehru for present crisis who he said gave preference to Sheikh Abdullah and ignored the then ruler of the State, Maharaja Hari Singh. He said otherwise Kashmir was a settled issue under India’s Independence Act of 1947. The Maharaja had settled this issue prior to 1947 but Nehru created the problem, he added.
State general secretary Dr Narinder Singh said after abrogation of Articles 370 and 35-A, BJP demands delimitation of the J&K to make it a ‘Khushal’ State. BJP vice president Narayan Singh also spoke on the occasion while vote of thanks was proposed by Mayor Chandramohan Gupta. The event was organized by BJP’s Liaison Committee comprising of V K Sethi and H S Premi.
Among others on dais included BJP general secretary (Org) Ashok Koul and general secretary, Yudhvir Sethi.