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Vajpayee accuses Nehru of plot to kill Mookerjee
July 07, 2004 03:19 IST
Former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee claimed on Tuesday, July 6, that Bharatiya Jana Sangh founder Syama Prasad Mookerjee had been killed in 1952 following a conspiracy hatched by the central government led by Jawaharlal Nehru and the Jammu and Kashmir government led by Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah.
Talking about his association with Mookerjee and the days when the Jana Sangh leader took up cudgels against the rule requiring a permit to enter Jammu and Kashmir, Vajpayee said his efforts and 'sacrifice' had ensured that the state was not separated from the country.
The Bharatiya Janata Party politician was speaking at a function organised to commemorate Mookerjee's 103rd birth anniversary at the BJP headquarters in New Delhi.
"When Mookerjee decided to violate the permit rule by entering J&K without a permit, we thought the Punjab government would arrest him and prevent him from proceeding further," Vajpayee, who was accompanying the Jana Sangh leader as a journalist, recalled. "However, that did not happen. Later we came to know that the J&K government and the Nehru government had entered into a conspiracy as per which it was decided that Mookerjee would be allowed to enter J&K, but not allowed to leave."
Vajpayee claimed that Nehru's government entered into the conspiracy as it feared that if Mookerjee was not allowed to enter Jammu and Kashmir, questions would be raised about the state's integration with the rest of the country. "The J&K government was told that he should not be allowed to come back," he claimed. That was why, he said, Mookerjee was "deliberately arrested" only after entering Jammu and Kashmir.
Mookerjee was kept under house arrest in Srinagar, where he died.
Vajpayee and former deputy prime minister Lal Kishenchand Advani also attacked Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and United Progressive Alliance chairperson Sonia Gandhi for not attending a function to pay tribute to their mentor in Parliament House.
"They displayed their cultural attitude and mentality by not attending the function in the Central Hall of Parliament," Vajpayee said. But he added, "We need not care whether they attended the function or not."
Advani noted that Speaker Somnath Chatterjee participated in the function, but "no one from the government" attended.
Gandhi usually attends such programmes, he said, "but she probably did not attend this time for the same reason [of ideological differences] that [Union Home Minister] Shivraj Patil cited for the removal of four governors with RSS backgrounds."
Advani advised that ideological differences should not become obstacles in such matters and recalled how he had gone to Kerala to attend E M S Namboodiripad's funeral a day after the Vajpayee government assumed charge in 1998 despite the Marxist veteran having been a trenchant critic of the RSS and the BJP.
BJP president M Venkaiah Naidu termed the absence of Singh and Gandhi at the function as "unfortunate" and claimed that Mookerjee had been a victim of "distortion of Indian history by Congress and Communists".
More reports from Jammu and Kashmir
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