Article 370 fuelled terror: Modi

Stating that no one had been able to speak about the benefits of Article 370 and Article 35A, the prime minister said the two sections only fomented terrorism backed by Pakistan. 

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday justified the government’s controversial decision to revoke Article 370, saying the special status to the state encouraged terrorism, separatism, dynastic rule and was an impediment to development.

In his address to the nation, broadcast both on TV and radio, Modi said elections to the state would be held soon.

Terming the government’s decision to revoke the Article "historic", Modi said, “The dream of Shyama Prasad Mookerjee, Atal Bihari Vajpayee, Sardar Vallabhai Patel and crores of Indians has now been fulfilled.” 

Stating that no one had been able to speak about the benefits of Article 370 and Article 35A, the prime minister said the two sections only fomented terrorism backed by Pakistan. 

“These two sections were being used as a weapon by Pakistan to provoke the sentiments of some people against the country and due to it 42,000 innocent persons had to lose their lives,” said the prime minister.

Modi said benefits of central laws available to other states were being denied to Jammu and Kashmir due to the two sections. But with the special status gone, Modi said the move would provide a better life to youths in the troubled region, as investments would be stepped up, more job opportunities created and tourism would receive a boost.

He also appealed to industrialists to come forward to make investments in the region.

Outlining his development plans, he said state government employees including police will soon get benefits on par with employees of other UTs and all vacant posts in Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh will be filled.

Modi assured that the situation will gradually normalise and exhorted them to make a “new Jammu-Kashmir and a new Ladakh” along with a “new India”.

“I assure the people of Jammu and Kashmir that you will get a chance to elect your representatives with full honesty and in an atmosphere of total transparency,” Modi said, hinting at holding of assembly elections in Jammu and Kashmir soon.

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