The Hitavada Correspondent :
SENIOR Congress leader Digvijaya Singh on Saturday courted a fresh controversy during a ‘Club-House Chat’ in response to a question from a journalist of Pakistani origin saying that the Congress would restore Article 370 in Kashmir when it returns to power. “Democracy was not there in Kashmir when they revoked Article 370. Then ‘insaniyat’ (humanity) was not there because they put everyone behind bars and ‘Kashmiriyat’ is something which is basically the fundamentals of secularism. Because in a Muslim-majority State, there was a Hindu raja (king) and both worked together. In fact, the reservation in Kashmir was given to Kashmiri Pandits in Government services. So therefore, the decision of revoking Article 370 and reducing the statehood of J&K is extremely sad decision and the Congress party would certainly have to have a relook on this issue,” Digvijay aSingh is allegedly heard saying in this audio with a screen shot that shows several faces.
Bharatiya Janata Party’s IT Cell chief Amit Malviya shared a clip of Digvijaya Singh’s purported chat on his Twitter handle, claiming that in the clubhouse chat, the Congress leader was talking about reconsidering Article 370 in Kashmir. Reacting sharply to Digvijaya Singh’s statement in New Delhi, Bharatiya Janata Party spokesman Dr. Sambit Patra described the exchange as a stage-managed show as a part of the Congress party’s toolkit to harm national interest. Reacting to this, Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan said the Congress had committed a sin by imposing Article 370 in Kashmir. “Kashmir is the crown jewel of India. It is an integral part of the country. It was the Congress, which committed the sin of imposing Article 370 in Kashmir…Congress speaks the language of Pakistan,” Chouhan said. He added that Sonia Gandhi should clear the stand of the Congress party on this issue. “She should answer, and if they do not answer, then it will be assumed that they completely agree with Digvijaya Singh ji’s views,” he said. Chouhan said that Digvijaya Singh will never be successful in his intentions.
“No matter how hard you try, your plans will never be successful. From Kashmir to Kanyakumari and from Gujarat to Arunachal Pradesh, this country is one, and will continue to be one," he said, while accusing the Congress’s Rajya Sabha MP of fuelling separatism and disturbing peace in Kashmir. State BJP president V D Sharma said the National Investigation Agency (NIA) should investigate the phone calls of Digvijaya Singh, and questioned the involvement of a Pakistani journalist in this chat. Sharma also said that he will soon write a letter in this regard to Union Home Minister Amit Shah. “NIA should investigate all the activities of Digvijaya Singh. The act of involvement of Pakistan's journalist in the chat should also be investigated...I will write a letter to the Union Home Minister in this regard,” he said, adding that the Congress veteran is habitual of doing this. Sharma said Digvijay Singh has made a “fashion” of attacking sovereignty of the country for appeasement and vote bank politics. Reacting to the audio, Madhya Pradesh Medical Education Minister Vishvas Sarang said that it is unfortunate that Digvijaya Singh gave this statement in a clubhouse chat, in which the Pakistani journalist was present. “Digvijaya Singh has betrayed the country by making this statement. This remark over Article 370 comes in the category of anti-national act,” Sarang said. He said that Digvijaya Singh and other Congress leaders are trying to defame India on the international stage. “Nobody can change the decision of revoking Article 370 from Jammu and Kashmir,” he said. Facing flak, Digvijaya Singh posted a tweet saying, “Illiterates cannot understand the difference between shall and consider.”