RS witnesses war of words over Jana Sangh founder

The members were participating in a debate on the statutory resolution to extend President's rule in J-K by another six months with effect from July 3, 2019, which was approved by Lok Sabha on Friday. (PTI File Photo)

The Rajya Sabha on Monday witnessed a war of words between BJP's Bhupender Yadav and Congress leader Anand Sharma over the latter's remarks accusing Jana Sangh founder Syama Prasad Mookerjee of striking a compromise with Muslim League in 1942 to become Bengal deputy chief minister. The BJP leader alleged that Sharma had distorted historical facts with an ill-intention.

"He (Sharma) had said that when Mookerjee became deputy chief minister of Bengal (after Independence) it was after he reached a compromise with the Muslim League. I would like to correct this for the record. The compromise reached in Bengal was with Fazlul Haq's Krishak Praja Party," Yadav said. Defending his remarks, Sharma said in 1942, when the Quit India Movement took place, a resolution was passed by Muslim League and Hindu Mahasabha to oppose it.

"The Congress governments had quit in provinces. In Punjab and Bengal, a proposal was given to Viceroy to form alternative governments. "The government formed in Bengal had Mookerjee as deputy chief minister and Rehman as chief minister. They had written to the Viceroy to crush the Quit India Movement terming it a revolt against Her Majesty," Sharma alleged.

Mookerjee was the founder of Bharatiya Jana Sangh, the BJP's predecessor party.

The members were participating in a debate on the statutory resolution to extend President's rule in J-K by another six months with effect from July 3, 2019, which was approved by Lok Sabha on Friday.

RPI(A) leader and Union Minister Ramdas Athawale called for renaming Jammu and Kashmir as Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh. "Kashmir has a majority Muslim society whereas Jammu has a Hindu majority society and Ladakh Buddhist majority society. But the name is only Jammu and Kashmir. Therefore, I appeal to our Home Minister not to segregate our Bahujan society and suggest him to consider for renaming the state to Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh," Athawale said. J-K Governor Satypal Malik had on November 21, 2018 dissolved the 87-member assembly citing apprehensions of horse trading and lack of a credible alternative for government formation. On December 20, 2018 President's rule was imposed.

The Home Minister on Monday also moved the Jammu and Kashmir Reservation (Amendment) Bill, 2019, to replace an ordinance issued by the previous government. PDP member Mir Mohammad Fayaz said "Kashmir is burning" and the people of the state want dialogue.

He wondered "what is the fault of the people living in Jammu and Kashmir if false promises were made to them by the party that ruled India for 70 years". During the debate, TKS Elangovan of the DMK alleged the BJP-led government at the Centre wanted to rule the state directly by extending the President's rule and termed it against democracy. Shamsher Singh Mahas of the BJP said things would have been different had Mufti Mohammand Sayeed been alive. Surendra Singh Nagar of the Samajwadi Party said, "We have no option but to support the extension of President's Rule in Jammu and Kashmir as the deadline is expiring tomorrow."

He said Assembly polls in the state should be held at the earliest. Vijila Sathyananth of the AIADMK said the Governor's rule was necessary in Jammu and Kashmir after the mess it had witnessed and expressed confidence that Prime Minister Narendra Modi would lead the way for a transformative solution to its problems.

Under Jammu and Kashmir Reservation (Amendment) Bill, 2019, people living along the International Border (IB) in Jammu and Kashmir will get benefits of reservation in direct recruitment, promotion and admission in professional courses on a par with those living along the Actual Line of Control.

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