Senior Congress leader P Chidambaram has slammed the Centre for revoking provisions of Article 370, saying the BJP would not have "snatched away" the special status had Jammu and Kashmir been a Hindu-dominated state.
Accusing the BJP government of revoking the Article with its "muscle power", he said the situation in Jammu and Kashmir was "unstable" and that international news agencies were covering the unrest, but not Indian media houses.
"...They (BJP) claim Kashmir is stable. Is it? Does it mean stable if Indian media houses don't cover the unrest in J&K," he said at a public event on Sunday to condemn the BJP's move.
He also took potshots at seven regional parties ruling in seven states, saying they did not cooperate against the BJP's move in the Rajya Sabha out of "fear".
"I know we do not have majority in Lok Sabha, but had the seven parties (AIADMK, YSRCP, TRS, BJD, AAP, TMC, JDU) cooperated, the opposition would have been in majority in RS. This is something disappointing," the former home minister said.
The TMC walked out but what's the difference, he asked.
"Around 10,000 people protested in Soura in J-K is a truth, police action took place is a truth and shootings happened during the stir is a truth" he said.
Chidambaram said that in the 70-year history of the nation, there has never been an example of a state being reduced to a Union Territory and it has always been the reverse.
"Today, Jammu and Kashmir has been turned into a municipality... There are special provisions for other states under Article 371, why only J and K... This is because of religious fanaticism.
"If J-K was a Hindu-dominated state, the BJP would not have done this. They did it only because the region is dominated by Muslims," the former union minister alleged.
"The BJP is bragging of integrating Kashmir with muscle power," he added.
Emphasising that there was never a conflict between Jawaharlal Nehru and Sardar Vallabhai Patel, Chidambaram said, "Patel was never an RSS functionary. They (BJP) don't have any leader, they are stealing our leader. No matter who steals, history doesn't forget to whom the product belongs."
Hitting out at Prime Minister Narendra Modi for "selectively" talking about laws that do not apply for J-K on the day he addressed the nation after abrogation of Article 370, the Congress leader said, "I can list out 90 other laws that apply to J-K."
Terming Congress leaders who quit the party as of "18-carat" quality, Chidambaram said only those still staying with the grand old party are of 22 and 24-carat quality.
For in-depth, objective and more importantly balanced journalism, Click here to subscribe to Outlook Magazine