Law Minister Kiren Rijiju on Thursday said India is paying the price for the “blunders” committed by country’s first prime minister Jawaharlal Nehru on Kashmir and slammed the Congress for defending him. His remarks came after the Congress launched attacks on Rijiju over his write-up “Five Nehruvian Blunders on Kashmir”.
Speaking to CNN-News18, the Law Minister said that the Congress has spread a false narrative over the years regarding Kashmir. “I don’t want to go into what Jairam Ramesh said… I am speaking with facts. Corrective steps are taken by our PM to undone the blunder committed. The country should not go by false narrative spread by Congress over the years… I have all the facts. Despite whole J&K being a part of India, a part of it is with Pakistan. How can we remain silent about this issue? This fact cannot be ignored,” the law minister said when asked about Congress leader Jairam Ramesh’s claim that Nehru was not alone in his decisions on Kashmir.
Ramesh in a tweet on October 13 said, “Maharaja Hari Singh dithered on accession. There were dream of independence. But when Pakistan invaded, Hari Singh acceded to India. Sheikh Abdullah championed accession to India entirely because of his friendship with and admiration for Nehru, and his respect for Gandhi. Sardar Patel was okay with J&K joining Pakistan till September 13, 1947 when the Nawab of Junagadh acceded to Pakistan.”
Rijiju refused to comment on claims about Sardar Patel. He also said he does not wish to get into any kind of debate with Congress leaders who slammed him.
Another Congress leader Pawan Khera on Thursday called Rijiju the “greatest student of WhatsApp University” for his comments on Nehru and Kashmir.
“Rijiju seems to be the brightest student in BJP’s WhatsApp University. With no facts or truth he is spreading such blunders. If needed congress will provide the BJP with History books so that they know what the real history is. It is only in the last 8 years situation in Kashmir deteriorated,” Khera told CNN-News18.
Rijiju retorted by saying he wrote about Nehru’s “blunders” with the help of documents from the Parliament. “Congress is trying to defend Nehru ji for his blunders. Whatever I have said is to put the record straight in front of the nation to recognise the mistakes by Nehru ji. This fact is there in the record. The documents which I have quoted is from the Parliament. Nehru himself have stated that Maharaj himself approached to join India. India had to pay heavy price because of the blunders committed by Nehru till toady we have paying the price,” he said.
The minister, in his column for www.news18.com, said that a historical lie has been perpetrated for the past seven decades that Kashmir was also among the princely states that created problems and Maharaja Hari Singh, the then ruler of the state, was dilly-dallying on joining India.
“As documents now reveal, it was Nehru who, in order to fulfil his personal agenda, created these problems and not the Maharaja,” he said.
The minister further said that the vacuum that Nehru created in Kashmir allowed Pakistan to meddle in Kashmir and ultimately its forces, in the guise of local tribals, invaded the territory of Kashmir on October 20, 1947. “Even then Nehru was unmoved. Pakistani forces were rapidly advancing in Kashmir. Maharaja Hari Singh again pleaded with Nehru to join the Indian union. But Nehru was still negotiating to fulfil his personal agenda,” Rijiju wrote.
Hitting out at the Law Minister, Congress General Secretary in-charge communications Jairam Ramesh said that Rijiju is lying something he has picked up from his “boss”. “He doesnt have the guts. He is LYING something he has picked up from his Boss,” he tweeted.
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