by Saima Bhat
Prime Minister Narendra Modi s comment on Kashmir has opened historic baggage again. In a veiled attack on the Congress leadership, Modi Wednesday brought in the name of Vallabhbhai Patel to reiterate that Kashmir crisis is because of Congress.
Soon after the PM Modi mentioned in the Parliament that“If Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel would have been the first PM of the country, entire Kashmir would have been ours” it led to a fierce political battle in the House as well as on the social networking sites.
As the virtual world took over, the news was first tweeted by International journalist Andrew Whitehead saying, “Modi today in Parliament: “Had Sardar Patel had been India’s first PM, part of #Kashmir would not be under control of Pakistan” Not sure about that. Nehru took huge risks militarily to win Kashmir valley in late 47-this more rhetoric than historical assessment.”
The spokesman of the principal opposition party National Conference, Junaid Mattu, also participated in the virtual debate, and tweeted, “Jenab @narendramodi Ji-If Sardar Patel had been India’s first PM even this part of Kashmir in all probability wouldn’t have been a part of India-given Patel’s opposition to allowing the State’s unique political identity to be recognised and respected. History is complex.”
But the opposition leader and former chief minister of the state, Omar Abdullah, also tweeted a link saying, “Of course no one really knows how things would have turned out but this thread gives us a decent idea.”
The link he retweeted had a thread of six tweets by an Indian historian netizen saying, “On the contrary, entire Kashmir might have been theirs. Patel was at one point willing to offer Kashmir to accede to Pakistan in return for Junagadh & Hyderabad’s accession to India.” (1/n)
“As he told Pak PM Liaquat Ali Khan:”Why do you compare Junagadh with Kashmir? Talk of Hyderabad and Kashmir and we could reach an agreement.” (2/n)”
“Patel even made his ‘offer’ public on 11 Nov 1947: “Our reply was that one could agree to Kashmir if they agreed to Hyderabad.” (3/n)”
“Absurd to assume that he would have been tougher than Nehru on Kashmir (4/n)”
“By August 1948, Patel thought that partition of Kashmir would offer a “permanent, immediate and realistic settlement”. Nehru thought the same. But the Pakistan is rejected the idea. (5/n)”
“If after 75 years we need reminding of elementary history of the Kashmir dispute, then perhaps we are condemned to live with it for much longer (n/n).”
India’s Hyderabad based firebrand Muslim leader, Asaduddin Owaisi, also tweeted saying “Treaty of accession was accepted by entire Cabinet which included Patil, Shyama Prasad will BJP wise guys tell what was written in it.”
Taking jibe at PM Modi, a netizen Venkat wrote: “Our PM gets his Gyan from WhatsApp university.”