Lok Sabha passed the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation (Amendment) Bill, 2021, today. During the debate in the bill, Union Home Minister Amit Shah on 13 February urged the members not to oppose the proposal just for the sake of politics.
Stressing that the bill does not mention anything about not granting statehood to the union territory, Shah said, “I will reiterate that this bill has nothing to do with the statehood of Jammu and Kashmir, in due time J&K will be given statehood.”
Taking a jibe at the Indian National Congress (INC), the home minister said, “You are asking us what we did in the last 17 months. What have you done in the last 70 years.”
During the debate on the bill, opposition party members alleged that the BJP made empty promises about the union territory and projected a tainted picture of “vikas” happening there. INC spoke of an increase in internet bans, ceasefire violations, curfews as well as the shrinkage of industries since the abrogation of article 370. INC MP Manish Tewari urged BJP to restore statehood in Jammu and Kashmir.
Amit Shah in Lok Sabha to Congress
Shah on 13 February tore into the INC, saying the party should introspect whether it was fit to demand an account from the Narendra Modi government. He said that before questioning 17 months of development in Jammu and Kashmir under central rule, the grand old party should give an account of its 70-year rule in the country.
Shah was replying to INC leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury who had asked the home minister about the promises he made to the people after the abrogation of Article 370, which provided special status to the former state of Jammu and Kashmir.
“We were asked what did we do about promises made during abrogation of Article 370. It has been 17 months since the abrogation and you are demanding an account for it. Did you bring an account of what you did for 70 years? Had you worked properly, you need not have asked us,” said Amit Shah.
The minister said, “I have no objection, I will give an account for everything. But those who were given the opportunity to govern for generations should look within if they are even fit to demand an account.”
“I have said in this house and I say it again that this Bill has got nothing to do with the statehood of Jammu & Kashmir. Statehood would be given to Jammu & Kashmir at an appropriate time,” he said.