'Trump’s Kashmir mediation claim damaging to India'

'Trump’s Kashmir mediation claim damaging to India'

CPM general secretary Sitaram Yechury. PTI file photo

CPM general secretary Sitaram Yechury said on Tuesday that the claim made by US President Donald Trump, that Prime Minister Narendra Modi had requested him to mediate between India and Pakistan over the Kashmir issue was “damaging” to India.

He also demanded to know if Trump was lying about why the Centre was not coming out clean over the issue.

“We find it very disturbing and damaging to India that the US President, in a conversation with the Pakistani Prime Minister, declares that the Indian Prime Minister had requested him to mediate in the Kashmir dispute and that information has been put out by the State Department as the official transcript of the press briefing,” said Yechury.

He was speaking to reporters at the conclusion of the day one of the two-day-long CPM state committee meeting in Kolkata.

Pointing out that the Indian Foreign Minister has denied Trump’s claim, Yechury in parliament asked which side was telling the truth.

“This has been officially denied in the Parliament today by the Indian External Affairs Minister. But both these contradictory statements are there. What is the truth behind this,” said Yechury.

He also said that India has always made it clear that Kashmir is a bilateral issue and there is no scope for any third-party intervention.

“India has always maintained that the Kashmir is a bilateral issue. There is no scope or no need for any third party intervention. Now in this kind of a situation, who is correct between Trump and Modi,” said Yechury.

As for the situation in West Bengal, Yechury alleged that 49 communal riots have taken place in the state since the last Assembly elections in 2016. He argued that since the Trinamool Congress (TMC) has failed to normalise the situation, it is clear that TMC can not the answer to BJP’s communal polarisation.

“Since the last Assembly elections, 49 communal riots have taken place in Bengal and this is something unheard of. What is the state government and the administration doing? Why has normalcy not been restored? This makes it clear that TMC is not the answer to the communal polarisation done by BJP,” said Yechury.

He also said that during the TMC regime, the number of RSS shakhas has increased from 405 in 2011 to 1427 till date.