Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman today accused the first Prime Minister of India, Jawaharlal Nehru, of internationalising the Kashmir issue by taking it to the United Nations. She remarked that the issue should not have gone to a global forum and rather should have been dealt with in the domestic circuit.
Then-Prime Minister Nehru had appealed to the UN Security Council through the petition filed in January 1948, following the attack of the Pakistan Army on India from behind the human shield of a tribal militia. On the basis of Nehru’s petition, the UNSC established the UN Commission for India and Pakistan to mediate between the two countries.
Speaking in the Rajya Sabha, Sitharaman said,” It is (the Kashmir issue) essentially an India-related issue. The Congress took this issue to the UN. Who took it? Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, our first prime minister, took the issue to (the) UN. Why? Because the British might have made some suggestion to him that this issue wouldn’t improve otherwise, and Prime Minister Nehru took it to the UN.”
Referring to Pakistan, Sitharaman said, “Till today, our neighbours are misusing it (Prime Minister Nehru taking the Kashmir issue to the UN).”
Stating unequivocally that Kashmir is an integral part of India, Sitharaman said, “It is an issue that should not have gone to a global forum. It is essentially an Indian issue, we could have handled it. We are handling it now and showing the difference.”
Replying to the nearly 4-hour-long discussion on the budget for the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir for 2022-23, Sitharaman said after the abrogation of Article 370, “You see justice reaching, democracy reaching, economic development reaching” to the residents of the UT.
The parliament today approved the Rs 1.42 lakh crore budget for Jammu and Kashmir for 2022-23, with the Rajya Sabha returning the relevant bills to the Lok Sabha. The Lok Sabha had passed the bills on 14 March.