Ravinder Jalali5th August 2019 will be remembered in the history of India in golden letters as a day when complete integration of J&K State with India took place. This will be the real tribute to Sardar Patel whose incomplete task has been completed now. The task which was left incomplete by great Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel due to the intervention of first Prime Minister, has now been completed by Junior Sardar Amit Shah. It is often not realized that among the other causes of Kashmir problem like reference of Kashmir to UN, halting Indian offensive when it was poised to drive out the invaders from Kashmir, Article 370 had played no less a part in preventing J&K from becoming an integral part of the Indian Union. Not many people are aware as how and why this Article was formulated and included in the Indian Constitution despite grave misgivings of Sardar Patel and a large number of the members of Congress Working Committee and Constituent Assembly. Article 370 was worked out between Sheikh Abdullah, who had by then been appointed Prime Minister of J&K by the Maharaja and Nehru, who kept the Kashmir portfolio with himself and kept Sardar Patel, the home minister, away from his legitimate function. It had been the biggest impediment to integration of J&K State into Indian Union. Hence it is argued and wisely said that had the Kashmir affairs been handled by Sardar Patel there would have been no problem in Kashmir. Sardar Patel ,the Iron Man of India rightly credited with creating a unified India by integrating 565 princely states in it.- he would have included Kashmir also in it if allowed to do so by Nehru. Unfortunately Sardar left this world in 1950 and the result was the present Kashmir imbroglio. Since then no sincere effort has been made to solve the problem, rather it has been manipulated and exploited to the hilt by the political parties with vested interests, Successive governments at the centre as well as in the state has only taken shelter under the special provision and used and abused it which has given rise to secessionism and separatism in valley. With the present Government coming to power second time consecutively after keeping abrogation of Article 370 on the top of agenda along with Article 35A, the present Government fulfilled the commitment with less than 100 days of forming the Government at the centre. Although Article 370, included in the Constitution on a temporary provision should have been gradually abrogated but this has not happened in seventy years. In fact whenever someone mentioned this, vested interests raise an outcry that legitimate rights of Kashmiris are being trampled upon. When ever elections to state assembly or Lok Sabha takes place Article 370 comes to life otherwise it is dead issue, rather it is a redundant issue. As a common man, people of J&K do not care much for this article and also it does not matter. First to use and abuse was NC and three generations of Abdullah’s who were thriving on it. Then Muftis also discovered this instrument and started milking it. Mufti Sayed was a congress leader earlier and has been holding various important portfolios in the centre and did not discuss there but when it comes to state level as well as local politics, Article 370 was coming to a central stage. I consider it as a saddest day in the history of India when the seat once occupied by a person like Sardar Patel, who was instrumental in uniting the whole India by unifying 565 erstwhile princely states, was then occupied by a person namely Mufti Mohd. Sayed, who had a separatist agenda and whose vision was to have a self rule for Kashmir. Mufti Mohd. Sayed’s daughter was kidnapped by the self styled terrorists and later got dreaded terrorists released in exchange of her daughter. It was immediately after a few days of his becoming Home Minister of India. Kidnapping of Rubaiya Sayeed was an act, carried out by members of JKLF. Terrorists released in exchange of Rubaya Sayed, daughter of Home Minister were Sheikh Abdul Hameed, Ghulam Nabi Butt, Noor Muhammad Kalwal; Muhammed Altaf; and Mushtaq Ahmed Zargar. We need to appreciate the then CM Farooq Abdulah who was not in favour of such a release in exchange. He was sure that nothing will happen to her but Home Ministry insisted for immediate release. If for argument sake it was a real kidnap and not an orchestrated but as true and honest Home Minster, I don’t think that any sincere and honest Home Minister would have accepted this unreasonable and emotional demand at the cost of nation. For a Home Minister, Nation is more than an individual relation. The Central government accepted their demands and freed the jailed terrorists. Rubaiya was kidnapped within five days of her father being made the Home Minister by the V. P. Singh Government .It was a sharp curve from Home Minister Sardar Patel to Home Minister Mufti Sayed. Now a new era in a new India, where the Home is handled by none other than Amit Shah who is known as a strong and committed Home Minister. In recent interviews as well as in election manifesto, both Prime Minister and Home Minister have strongly advocated the abrogation of article 370 and Article 35 A and now such an occasion had come when this blot on the Indian constitution has been wiped out and brought uniformity in the national integration. Why a state of Indian Union should had a special status? It conveys a wrong signal not only to Kashmiris but also to the separatists, Pakistan and indeed the international community that J&K is still to become integral part of India. It was a big move by the Indian government and is ready to move ahead in this world with new status and dignity where India will not require any help to sort out its internal issues from the international body. India is changing for the better future … Present Home Minster has proved himself a new Sardar who fitted into the shoes of first Home Minster Sardaar Vallabhbhai Patel, Iron man of India, who was responsible for the total integration of our nation and whatever discrepancy and discrimination that had been prevalent since 1947 has been regularised and streamlined by the New Sardar, Amit Shah.
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