New Delhi: On Tuesday, with the release of BJP manifesto, in which it claimed to abrogate Article 370, political discourse over the issue is gaining momentum with each passing day. Union Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman advised National Conference chief Farooq Abdullah to engage in meaningful discussion rather than giving threatening talks. Commenting on Farooq's statements, Sitharaman said, as ET reports, "I think people who have held constitutional positions earlier like the chief minister of the state and other leaders at both state and central level should engage in a meaningful discussion on these matters rather than giving threatening statements."
Here it is to be noted that adding more, she said, "Today, the country finds sense and meaning in greater dialogue and discussion rather than just an emotional claim. I think every matter whether we may like it or not, will have to be spoken in detail for the people to understand rather than taking a jaded position." Sitaraman was also of the view that Article 370 needs to be relooked. Turning the pages of history, she claimed, "In 1994, there was a unanimous resolution in Parliament saying that J&K inclusive of parts which are in occupation under Pakistan is an integral part of India. We've to look at ways in which integration of J&K happens effectively and for which discussions are welcome."
Earlier on Monday, miffed with the BJP manifesto, where abrogation of Article 370 was mentioned, had said, "Does BJP want to abolish Article 370? Do they think that they will bring people (Kashmiri Pandits) from outside and settle them here? Do they think we will not respond and sleep? We will fight against it Insha Allah." Adding more, Abdullah said, "How will you abolish it? Where will Allah stay? I swear by Allah's name that even want we get freedom from this. Let them do it. We will see. I will also see who will stand to hold their flag? I will see, and you will see. Therefore, don't do such things which break our hearts."
At nutshell, BJP in their manifesto had promised to abolish Article 370 and Article 35A. It also pledged to make all efforts to ensure the safe return of Kashmiri Pandits. Among other things, BJP in its manifesto stated continue to adopt the policy of 'Zero Tolerance' against terrorism and extremism and promised to give 'free hand' to security force. The party also said to speed up the purchases of outstanding defence-related equipment and weapons.