Rajat Sharma

Why PM said, revoking Article 370 was a fitting tribute to Sardar Patel

AKB1909On the birth anniversary of India’s first Home Minister Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel on Thursday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi told a gathering at Kevadiya, Gujarat, that the revocation of Article 370 granting special status to Jammu & Kashmir was a fitting tribute to the memory of the ‘Iron Man’.

Speaking to people at the feet of the world’s tallest statue of Sardar Patel, Modi said, ‘Article 370 had created a wall in Kashmir promoting separatism and terrorism, and I am here today to humbly tell Sardar Patel that the wall has been demolished. I dedicate the August 5 decision to revoke Article 370 to the memory of Sardar Patel.’

India’s first Home Minister holds the distinction of merging 565 princely states in the Indian Union. He completed his task successfully leaving no room for future dispute. India’s first Prime Minister Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru had taken the responsibility of merging Jammu & Kashmir in the Indian Union. Nehru decided to give special status to J&K under Article 370 along with a separate flag and a separate Constitution. Patel had opposed the move at that time. He wanted a united and secure India, but the Kashmir dispute continued to be a vexed problem for the last 72 years.

For more than 70 years, none of the governments at the Centre mustered the courage to revoke Article 370 and Article 35A that gave the J&K government special powers under a separate Constitution. J&K continued to exist with a separate flag, a separate Constitution and separate emblem. It was Prime Minister Narendra Modi who showed the courage to revoke these articles from the Constitution and integrated J&K with the rest of India. This is certaintly the biggest tribute to the memory of Sardar Patel and all credit should go to Modi for achieving this feat.

It was a coincidence that on the birth anniversary of Sardar Patel, Jammu & Kashmir was formally bifurcated on Thursday as two new union territories of the Indian Union. The event was hailed by PM Modi who said this move would bring political stability and end corruption in Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh.

Comments are closed.