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Friday, Sep 20, 2019

At Jind rally, Amit Shah calls J&K move ‘milestone’, slams Cong

Addressing a rally in Haryana’s Jat heartland, Amit Shah said the revocation of J&K’s special status under Article 370 would help develop the region and make it free of terrorism.

india Updated: Aug 17, 2019 01:21 IST
HTC and Agencies
HTC and Agencies
Hindustan Times, Jind
BJP President and Home Minister Amit Shah addresses a public rally in Jind on Friday.
BJP President and Home Minister Amit Shah addresses a public rally in Jind on Friday. (Photo: ANI)
         

Union home minister Amit Shah said on Friday the withdrawal of special status to Jammu and Kashmir is a “big milestone” for the country’s unity, accusing the Congress of not taking the step because of its “vote-bank greed”.

He also said Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Independence Day announcement on creating the post of Chief of Defence Staff will strengthen the country’s defence manifold.

Addressing a rally in Haryana’s Jat heartland, Shah said the revocation of J&K’s special status under Article 370 would help develop the region and make it free of terrorism.

He said the Modi government took the step within 75 days of coming to power in its second term, while the previous Congress-led governments could not do so in “72 years”.

“Abrogation of Article 370 and 35A is a big milestone for the unity and integrity of India and now there is no impediment,” he said in his first public meeting after the government move.

“We had been saying that Kashmir is an integral part of India, but Article 370 was giving some sort of message that something is still unfinished,” he said, describing its undoing as the “biggest work” done by the Modi government in its second term so far.

The home minister also slammed the previous governments for not creating the post of Chief of Defence Staff, recommended after the 1999 Kargil war with Pakistan.

“Governments came and went but never took a decision on it,” he said, hailing the announcement made by Modi in his Independence Day address.

The BJP president lauded Haryana chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar for running a “corruption free” government in the state. “I have come here to congratulate Khattar,” he said.

He said the state was infamous for “land deals” and recruitment in government jobs had turned into a “trade”. “In one term, Khattar turned corruption into ‘bhoot kaal’ (past tense),” he said.

Haryana, along with Maharashtra, will go to polls later this year.

First Published: Aug 16, 2019 23:41 IST