Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), national general secretary and former Union Law Minister, Arun Jaitley termed the Article 370 a historical blunder and blamed the ideological milieu of that time for incorporating this Article in the Constitution that gave the special status to J&K state. This Article is the root cause of all problems as its objective was to create a separate society in Kashmir , he said, adding the Kashmiri Pandits (KPs) have become the victims of this blunder that resulted in conspiracy hatched during 1989 to force their migration from Valley and the Government was caught napping.
Arun Jaitley also accused the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) of bringing dead issues at the cost of those who have actually suffered during the 17-year long terrorism in the State. The senior BJP leader said over the 17th death anniversary of Prem Nath Bhat, the function was organised by Prem Nath Bhat Memorial Trust in Jammu. Terrorists had gunned down Bhat, a Kashmiri Hindu, on December 27, 1989
Expressing his full solidarity with the Kashmiri Pandits whom the BJP leader termed the ?victims of ethnic cleansing?, he said hundreds of members of the community were killed but no FIRs have been registered. This is called the ethnic cleansing where one community is eliminated in the name of religion. Had this happened in any other country with Christians or Muslims, the world from UNO to BBC and CNN would have made it an issue. But the reasons why the KPs have been neglected here is the result of this perverted definition of secularism in India , he maintained.
The BJP leader said though Pakistan failed to snatch Kashmir during the past three conventional wars, it changed its policy and resorted to unconventional type of war in 1989 to succeed in her vicious designs. In this unconventional war it was the community of Kashmiri Pandits which suffered the most, he added.
Speaking on the Indo-Pak relations, Sh Arun Jaitley said that the Indo-Pak relations were in their fifth and the ?most dangerous phase?.
Explaining the five phases Shri Arun Jaitley said that the first phase was the phase of accession of the Hindus but secular India with the Muslim dominated Jammu and Kashmir. ?During this phase, the Indian leadership then after signing the instrument of accession created a hurdle for the state in Article 370 due to which the big investors outside the state could not put their money in the state leading to underdevelopment?. He termed the special status to the state under Article 370 as a Herculean blunder on the part of Indian leadership.
The second stage, he said, was when the Congress governments at New Delhi played the ?politics of opportunism? by arresting the first Prime Minster of Jammu and Kashmir and the state'smost towering leader Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah. ?Later they handed over the government to the same leader,? he said.
According to Shri Arun Jaitley, the Indian intelligence and security agencies were caught napping in the third phase when insurgency erupted in the state in late eighties. ?Pakistan had failed to win the conventional war against India in Kashmir thrice. So they decided to go for the unconventional war and supported terrorism. It was during this period that the Kashmiri Hindus suffered the most,? he said.
The senior BJP leader said that the entire world opened its eyes to terrorism in the fourth stage. ?The stage started initially in 1999 at the time of the Kargil war and later completely after the 9/11 in 2001. During this stage India was able to internationalise cross-border terrorism. Previously Pakistan used to internationalise the human rights issues in Kashmir whenever the Kashmir issue came up,? he added.
However, the present stage, the fifth one, is most dangerous for New Delhi feels Shri Arun Jaitley. ?Back channel diplomacy with Islamabad is going to be disastrous for us,? he said adding New Delhi was giving up to the Pakistan President'sformulas on Kashmir during this stage. ?Musharaff'sidea of joint mechanism on Kashmir is coming up, which is a complete surrender,? Jaitley said.
Earlier BJP state president Ashok Khajuria also paid rich tributes to Prem Nath Bhat whom he termed a voice of oppressed and suppressed people in Kashmir.
Shri H N Pandita, Trustee of Pt. Prem Nath Bhat Memorial Trust highlighted the contribution of Shri Bhat. On the occasion, two martyrs?Tej Krishen Pandit and Ashok Kumar were felicitated posthumously. ?K.S.K.