Terming Congress as the architect of the present mess in J&K, Brig Anil Gupta, State Spokesperson of Bharatiya Janata Party criticised the statement of ex Home Minister and senior Congress leader P Chidambaram advocating “Greater Autonomy” for Jammu & Kashmir as opportunistic, contradictory, misleading and motivated. By advocating Greater Autonomy Chidambaram is contradicting the stand taken by his own party on the floor of the house when the autonomy resolution was passed by a voice vote by the J&K Legislative Assembly on 26 June 2000. Mr Chidambaram needs to be reminded that the resolution moved by the then Law and Parliamentary Affairs Minister, Mr. P. L. Handoo, was passed amid opposition from members of the Congress(I), the BJP and the Panthers Party. The entire opposition had staged a walk-out from the assembly clearly indicating that it was not the demand of the entire state of Jammu & Kashmir but of a particular political party. Chidambaram’s party had opposed the Greater Autonomy resolution on the floor of the house and today he is advocating the same. It has once again exposed the dual face of Congress on matters relating to J&K. During six decades of its rule at the centre and four decades in the state, the party has made no move to resolve the Kashmir imbroglio created by it due to its flawed policies except making false promises and loud statements leading to the current mess creating a wide rift between the Valley and rest of the nation, accused Brig Gupta. Congress needs to clarify before the nation its stand on the issue of Greater Autonomy.
It is to the credit of the then NDA government led by Shri Atal Behari Vajpayee (NC was part of this government) which unanimously rejected the demand for autonomy stating that“acceptance of the resolution would set the clock back and reverse the natural process of harmonising the aspirations of the people of Jammu and Kashmir with the integrity of the nation”, stated Brig Gupta. He further clarified that the issue of restoring the constitutional situation in Jammu and Kashmir to its pre-1953 position had been discussed in detail by the former Chief Minister, late Sheikh Abdullah, with the former Prime Minister, Mrs Indira Gandhi in 1974-75.It is noteworthy that the agreement signed after these negotiations had affirmed that “provisions of the Constitution of India already applied to the state of Jammu and Kashmir without adaptation or modification are unalterable.” If this has been the stand of the Congress and NC in 1975, why is it that the issue is being raised time and again by the successors of Sheikh Abdullah and the Congress is maintaining a dual policy on the same, questioned Brig Gupta?
The fact is that both NC and Congress has nothing concrete to offer to the people of Kashmir except false promises and dubious political machinations to ensure that pot continues to boil in Kashmir. It also appears to be part of a sinister design to derail the sustained dialogue process initiated by the government to find a final and lasting solution to the imbroglio since demand of autonomy is against national interest, said Brig Gupta.