Former union minister and MLA Chaman Lal Gupta has termed Article 370 as a thorn in polity of Jammu and Kashmir and regretted that instead of discussing merits and demerits of the provision, certain protagonists of the so called "special status" were trying to link it with accession of the state with Indian Union.
Commenting on the ongoing controversy over the Article Gupta said, "On the very face of it the provision has been incorporated in the statue book as temporary but it is strange that even the Congress party leaders are trying to link this controversial provision with the accession of the state, ignoring the fact that under law Jammu and Kashmir acceded to Indian union on October 26, 1947, when the ruler of the state, Maharaja Hari Singh, signed the instrument of accession, whereas Article 370 was adopted in October, 1949, two years after the accession."
"It is ridiculous to say that this provision is a bridge between Jammu and Kashmir and rest of India," he added and pointed out that when this provision was adopted amidst protests from the nationalists, the then Prime Minister, Jawahar Lal Nehru, in the Parliament had assured that the provision would wither away with time.
Gupta said, "Article 370 has caused more harm than any good to the country as a whole, more so, people of the state have been deprived of their basic rights and has affected progress of the state."
He added, "Article 370 is an offshoot of the sad communal partition of India in 1947 and many of the protagonists are infected by the virus of two nation theory or ignorant about the facts."
Gupta said the retention of the Article was not only against the unity and national interests but also injurious to rights of the people of Jammu and Kashmir.