Azad’s Book Out, Read the Revelations


by Raashid Andrabi

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SRINAGAR: Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad, who recently launched his autobiography “Azaad”, has made explosive claims about his former party, Congress, its leadership and more. In his book, Azad provides a personal account of his political journey spanning five decades and offers insights into the evolution of India’s political landscape. The revelations in Azad’s autobiography have stirred up a storm in political circles; with many wondering about the impact they will have on Congress and Indian politics. The book is sure to cause ripples in the Congress party, which is already struggling to remain relevant in Indian politics.


The Launch of “Azaad: An Autobiography”

Ghulam Nabi Azad’s book “Azaad: An Autobiography” was launched on April 5 in New Delhi in the presence of several prominent political leaders drawn from various parties. The book offers a personal account of Azad’s political journey spanning five decades, tracing the remarkable evolution of India’s political landscape. The book launch was attended by former Union Minister Dr Karan Singh, who released the book.

In a tweet, Azad said, “With candid reflections on my life and career alongside some of India’s and the world’s most influential leaders, ‘Azaad’ captures the essence of the great Indian story. I hope my readers will enjoy reading it as much as I have enjoyed writing it”.

Dealing with Mufti’s Backdoor Entry

Former Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir, Ghulam Nabi Azad, has spoken about the behind-the-scenes events leading up to the formation of the state government in 2002. Azad claimed that he had offered the opportunity for the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) to join the government, believing that it would make the government more stable. However, he alleges that PDP leader Mufti Mohammad Sayeed had other plans.

After initially agreeing to join the government, Mufti suddenly demanded to be made the Chief Minister, causing a rift between the parties. Ultimately, despite having the support of 42 MLAs, Azad was forced to return to national politics, while Mufti became the Chief Minister. Azad’s revelations have shed new light on the contentious events that unfolded in Jammu and Kashmir nearly 20 years ago.

Azad has claimed in his autobiography that late Mufti Muhammad Sayeed misused his generosity to become the Chief Minister of Jammu & Kashmir in 2002. Azad said that he offered Mufti Muhammad Sayeed to be part of the government when he had a letter of support from 42 MLAs to become CM. In the book, Azad reveals that he trusted Mufti and did not spot his deviousness. He also mentioned that Mufti confirmed his participation in his government when he and Dr Manmohan Singh, the then leader of the opposition in Rajya Sabha, met him in Srinagar. Azad claims that Mufti wanted to hijack the government and become the chief minister of the state.

PDP calls Azad’s book “blatant lies” and “cock and bull story”

‘Azaad’ reveals an alleged attempt by former J&K Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed to hijack the government during the 2002 PDP-Congress government formation.

In this December 2007 photograph, Ghulam Nabi Azad is seen listening to Narendra Modi. Then, both of them were the Chief Ministers.

But the PDP has dismissed Azad’s claims as “blatant lies” and accused him of trying to engineer defection and split Muslim votes. Senior PDP leader Naeem Akhtar also accused Azad of conspiring with the Governor, leading to unrest in 2008, and distorting facts to appease PM Modi. The PDP’s response has been critical, questioning Azad’s credibility and legacy in J&K, The Hindu Reported.

Akhtar’s sharp reaction came after reading the book excerpts produced in the newspapers, which he said looked like “to appease Modi and distort the facts about Kashmir.” He also accused Azad of taking dictation from somewhere else and said that he was performing duty in J&K, perhaps to retain his bungalow in Delhi and secure a Rajya Sabha seat.

Azad’s Revelations on Rahul Gandhi

In an interview with the media, Azad claimed that Rahul Gandhi is the primary reason why he and many others are not in the Congress today. He asserted that one has to be “spineless” to remain in the grand old party. Azad claimed that it is not in the hands of Congress Parliamentary Party chairperson Sonia Gandhi or even Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge to ensure his return in the party fold even if they wanted.

He asserted, “It was too late” for him to do so even if Rahul Gandhi sought his return. The veteran leader, who has since floated the Democratic Progressive Azad Party, said no one is “untouchable” in politics today and he could go with any party to form a Government as he did not rule out going with the BJP, to be a part of a Government in Jammu and Kashmir if both win once elections are held there.

Azad also noted that had Rahul Gandhi not torn the ordinance brought out by the UPA Government in 2013, he would not have been disqualified today and described the then Union Cabinet as “weak” by not going ahead despite Gandhi tearing the ordinance.

Azad’s Views on Congress Leadership

Ghulam Nabi Azad is not mincing his words when it comes to his criticism of the current Congress leadership. In a recent interview, he slammed them for “running the show on Twitter” and claimed to be “24-Carat Congress” compared to their “18 Carat”. He also lamented the party’s tendency to project incapable leaders and the prevalence of sycophancy within the party.

Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad prevented Dr Farooq Abdullah’s fall on the stairs on March 14, 2020 when the two leaders came out of the meeting in Srinagar in March 2020.

Azad also had some advice for party leaders facing probe agencies, suggesting they should not be forced to appear and instead cited former prime ministers who voluntarily went along with their leaders when facing inquiries. Despite his loyalty to the party, Azad questioned whether the Congress truly wants people like him, or just those who are fast on Twitter and make grandiose claims.

Azad’s Scathing Criticism of Senior Party Leaders

Ghulam Nabi Azad has also taken a swipe at senior party leaders Jairam Ramesh and Salman Khurshid in his autobiography, “Azaad”.

Azad criticizes senior Congress leaders Jairam Ramesh and Salman Khurshid in his autobiography “Azaad”. He accuses Ramesh of not protesting against the repeal of Article 370, while he takes issue with Khurshid’s comments calling “Rebels with Cause” traitors. Azad also bemoans the downfall of the Congress party, blaming the leadership’s inability to recognize potential leaders and the prevalence of sycophancy within the party.


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