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Scrapping Article 370 was a milestone in India's unity and integrity: Amit Shah

News Agencies | Updated on: 16 August 2019, 18:05 IST

Playng the Kashmir card in Haryana where he set a target of 75 plus seats in the coming Assembly elections, Home Minister and BJP President Amit Shah on Friday said that the abrogation of Article 370 from Jammu and Kashmir was a major "milestone" for the unity and integrity of India.

"Khattarji gave a corruption-free government. We gave a Lal (Khattar) after Haryana saw several Lals," he said in an apparent jibe at late Chief Ministers Devi Lal, Bansi Lal and Bhajan Lal. The three leaders were popularly known as three Lals of Haryana.

Shah set a target of 75+ for the party cadres and workers for the upcoming Assembly polls which is due later this year.

"Last time you gave us 47 seats. This time give us 75 seats. Our victory will not be counted till we get 75 seats," he said.

Addressing his first rally after the Centre's Kashmir decisions, he said what opposition parties failed to do in 70 years was done by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in just 75 days.

"It has only been 75 days of the Modi government. This government has done what the other governments have not done even in their five years term. It (scrapping of Article 370) was a major achievement of the Modi government. It was the dream of Sardar Patel to see 'Akhand Bharat' but Article 370 was a hurdle in its way," Shah said amid the chants of "Bharat Mata Ki Jai" during the rally.

"Removal of Article 370 and 35A was a major work. It is a major milestone in India's unity and integrity. The entire country is happy because from Kashmir to Kanyakumari and Kachh to Kamroop, India is one," he continued.

The Home Minister opined that for better coordination among the three armed forces--Army, Navy and Air Force--Chief of Defence Staff is the need of the hour to defeat the enemies.

Setting the tone for the party's election campaign in Haryana, Shah expressed confidence that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) would win more than 75 seats in the upcoming polls.

Meanwhile, he also accused the Congress of doing vote bank politics instead of focussing on national interests.

Praising Modi, Shah said that the Prime Minister has always kept the national interests above all.

Hailing abrogation of Article 370, Shah said that such a bold decision can only be taken by those who have a clear vision and doesn't care for vote bank politics.

"I am proud that Modiji didn't care for vote bank. He took the decision in the country's interest," Shah said.

"Article 370 has become history now. The government after crossing the mark of 300 (in Lok Sabha), abrogated Article 370 with 370 votes," he added.

The Union Home Minister said the removal of Article 370 is a tribute to the brave hearts of Haryana.

Referring to Prime Minister Modi's announcement for the creation of the office of the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), Shah said it was the necessity of the time for better coordination among the three services and also took on the opposition parties for delaying it.

"After the Kargil war, it was recommended to create a CDS but the government's who ruled the country could not take a call. It was announced by Modiji yesterday. It was necessary for better coordination among the three services to defeat the enemies during wars," he said.

He said the creation of the CDS would empower our armed forces and enemies would not have the courage to challenge as it would be a coordinated organ of the three forces.

Shah hailed Manohar Lal Khattar's tenure as Chief Minister and said he had given a corruption-free government in Haryana which was infamous for land deals during Congress regime.

"In the last five years, Haryana has witnessed a drastic change. A strong foundation has been laid. Now we have to build a strong building upon it. The building should be so high that one could see Kashmir from here," he said.

Attacking the Congress and former Chief Minister Bhupender Singh Hooda, Shah said previous governments were playing into the hands of builders, employment turned into a business for ruling class and casteism was at its peak but Khattar government in his five years made these things of past.

Under the leadership of Khattar, the BJP swept all 10 parliamentary seats with 58 per cent vote share in 2019 General Elections.

In 2014 elections, BJP had won 47 of the in 90-member Assembly seats dethroning two-time Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda and decimated the Congress to just 15 seats.

The Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) and the Haryana Janhit Congress (HJC) secured 19 and 2 seats respectively.

The upcoming election in Haryana is going to witness a multi-corner contest as Congress and INLD are all set to contest separately. Newly formed former Jannayak Janata Party (JJP) of former MP Dushyant Chautala has recently forged an alliance with BSP.


First published: 16 August 2019, 18:05 IST