BJP chief Amit Shah and former Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir and PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti started a war of words after the former said that 2020 will be a deadline for Article 370 in Kashmir.
Shah, in an interview, appeared on the Economic Times, was replying to a question about the abrogation of Article 370 in the state when he made the comment.
“First we tried for a solution through peace. When that didn’t happen, we started taking controlled action against extremist and separatist groups. NIA did many raids, cut their source of funding. We banned JKLF, Jamaat-e-Islami, removed their security and ran them aground. As for 370 and 35A, this was on BJP’s agenda since the day of its inception, is there even today and will always remain until they are removed,” Shah said.
When the interviewer further asked whether the removal of Article 370 & 35A is the way forward for a solution to the Kashmir problem, he said, “yes, we believe so.”
However, Mufti was quick to counter his statement stating that Shah is daydreaming.
“I want to tell Amit Shah that you are daydreaming if you think you will abrogate Article 370,” she told reporters after filing her nomination papers for the Anantnag Lok Sabha seat. She further said that the year 2020 will also be Jammu and Kashmir’s deadline to the country.
When enquired about PDP’s stand on Article 370 and 35A, Mufti – seemingly emotional- replied, “we will chop off the hands of those who will try to abrogate the special status of Jammu and Kashmir.” Article 370 provides special status to J&K. Article 35A grants special rights and privileges to the “permanent residents” of the state. However, Shah continues to make similar statements ignorant to the reaction of the Mufti.
While addressing a rally in Ahmedabad on Saturday Shah made people gathered there to chant a slogan that “entire Kashmir belongs to us.” Shah was holding a roadshow as part of his election campaign.
“Where Mookerjee sacrificed his life, that Kashmir is ours, that entire Kashmir is ours,” he made people chant.