Jammu, May 29, (Scoop News)- Wondering over the stance taken by Bharatiya Janata Party over abrogation of Article 370, Provincial President National Conference Mr Devender Singh Rana on Thursday revealed that this constitutional proviso had full endorsement of even Shyama Prasad Mukherjee, the founder of Jana Sangh, the earlier avatar of BJP.
“How can they wish away this historical fact while generating passions over the issue”, he said while referring to the debates of the Constituent Assembly wherein Mr Mukherjee, in his capacity as a member, never opposed the Article 370 and became a signatory to the Constitution.
Mr Rana was addressing a press conference at Sher-e- Kashmir Bhavan here this afternoon. He was flanked by senior provincial leadership.
Mr Rana reiterated that Article 370 is a bridge between Jammu and Kashmir and rest of the country while assailing the policy statement of the Union Government with regard to initiation of ‘process of scrapping this vital constitutional proviso’.
“National Conference opposes any such move which jeopardizes the legitimate guarantee enshrined in the Constitution of India for the people of Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh”, the Provincial President said while addressing a press conference at Sher-e-Kashmir Bhavan here this evening.
Mr Rana sought to clear the mist over myth and reality revolving around this constitutional proviso, saying Article 370 cannot be abrogated. He said his party would appreciate a debate, which in fact has already been volunteered by Chief Minister Omar Abdullah, with any political party across the country. “We are not shying away from deliberating over this issue”, he said and referred to his participation in a seminar on it in Jammu recently which was attended among others by senior BJP leader Meenakshi Lekhi. He said Article 370 is part of Indian Constitution which has come into force after detailed and threadbare discussions by stalwarts like Sardar Patel, Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah, Gopalaswamy Aiyenger and Dr Shyama Prasad Mukherjee, Mirza Afzal Beig and Moti Ram Baigda.
The Provincial President wondered over the perception being generated over Article 370 with vested interests projecting those speaking in favour of this provision as anti-national. “This peculiar mindset is to be shunned”, he said, adding that the bogey over Article 370 being raised by BJP is not new. “They have been raking up this issue in different manifestations for the past six decades and the difference is only that during elections the intensity becomes more pronounced”, he said while cautioning against polarizing the situation on this sensitive issue.
Mr Rana urged the people not to get carried away by the mischievous propaganda unleashed by the proponents of abrogation of Article 370 on the plea that it was coming in the way of development of Jammu and Kashmir. “This is erroneous perception spread with malicious intent”, he maintained. He also sought to off-set the misconception on interlinking Article 370 with State Subject Laws saying the latter had been conceived and implemented by Maharaja Pratap Singh in 1927 to safeguard the interests of the people of Jammu and Kashmir.
The Provincial President said that rhetoric on Article 370 is in contravention to the spirit generated by Prime Minister Narinder Modi while stressing inclusiveness of his government. “The statement of the Minister of State in PMO has vitiated this spirit”, he said, adding that the remarks cannot be ignored as off-the-cuff.
When asked by a reporter that the Minister concerned has backtracked from the statement which snowballed into a huge controversy, the Provincial President said it has been partial and limited only to the extent of the mention of Prime Minster”. He said the Union Government should come out with its stand over the issue
Mr Rana made a passionate appeal to political class not to whip up passions in order to polarize the society. He emphasized the need for addressing to the genuine issues concerning the common people rather than indulging in rhetoric. He said media can play a predominant role in this regard so that political discourse is concentrated on the issues of inclusive development.
“Let’s pursue progressive and not the regressive agenda”, Mr Rana added.
The Provincial President was flanked by senior party leaders, Peer Mushtaq Ahmed Shah Bukhari, Mr Rattan Lal Gupta, Th Kashmira Singh, Mr Brij Mohan Sharma, Babu Rampal, Sheikh Bashir Ahmed, Smt. Bimla Luthra, Mr Jugal Mahajan. S. Gurdeep Singh Sassan, Smt. Vijay Lakshmi Dutta, Mr. Dharamveer Singh Jamwal, Mr. Chander Mohan Sharma, Mr. Taranjeet Singh Tony, Mr. Surinder Singh Bunty, Mr. Mohammad Ayub Malik, Mr. Abdul Gani Teli and others.
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