A day after Union Home Minister Amit Shah launched a scathing against the Congress party over its decision to join the so-called People’s Alliance for the Gupkar Declaration, what he called as ‘Gupkar Gang’, the Congress party has now taken a U-turn to distance itself from the proposed alliance.
Earlier, there were reports that the Congress party had joined the People’s Alliance for Gupkar Declaration (PAGD) ahead of the District Development Council (DDC) elections in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir. People’s Alliance for Gupkar Declaration (PAGD), colloquially referred to as Gupkar Gang is an alliance of several political parties seeking restoration of the erstwhile state’s special status.
Reportedly, Jammu and Kashmir Pradesh Congress Committee (PCC) had attended a five-hour-long joint meeting of National Conference and Peoples Democratic Party in Jammu to deliberate on strategy and finalisation of candidates to be fielded commonly in the District Development Council (DDC) polls. NC leader Devender Rana had also stated that Congress has expressed its support to the alliance.
Home Minister Amit Shah on Tuesday had launched an attack on People’s Alliance for the Gupkar Declaration alias ‘Gupkar Gang’. He called out the anti-India statements by the leading members and declared that the Gupkar gang’s intentions to garner international support for their divisive agenda will not succeed.
In his tweets, HM Shah had said that the Gupkar Gang is going ‘global’ and wants foreign forces to intervene in Jammu and Kashmir, an internal matter. Pointing out to the disrespect towards India’s sovereignty and national flag that some leaders of the alliance have displayed, Shah asked Sonia and Rahul Gandhi if they agree with the point of view of their alliance in Jammu and Kashmir.
The Gupkar Gang is going global! They want foreign forces to intervene in Jammu and Kashmir. The Gupkar Gang also insults India’s Tricolour. Do Sonia Ji and Rahul Ji support such moves of the Gupkar Gang ? They should make their stand crystal clear to the people of India.— Amit Shah (@AmitShah) November 17, 2020
Shah had said that the ‘Gupkar Gang’ wants to take Jammu and Kashmir back to the era of terror and turmoil. “They want to bring back Article 370, which was anti-Dalit, anti-women, and anti-tribals”, he added. Amit Shah had even warned the so-called Gupkar gang, saying that if they do not learn to swim with the national mood, the people will soon sink them.
Congress takes a U-turn on Gupkar alliance
Following severe criticism over its activities in Jammu and Kashmir and soon after the Home Minister’s tweets, the Congress party distanced itself from the earlier reports stating that it was neither a part of the Gupkar Alliance nor the six-party bloc of the People’s Alliance for Gupkar Declaration (PAGD) in Jammu and Kashmir.
The clarification comes hours after Union Home Minister Amit Shah asked the party to clear its stand on whether it is backing the alliance that is seeking to restore Article 370 in the erstwhile state.
In a statement, Congress’s chief spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala claimed that Amit Shah was making mischievous statements on Jammu & Kashmir and insisted that the Congress would never compromise on the country’s territorial integrity.
“The Congress is neither part of Gupkar Alliance nor PAGD. Will Mr Amit Shah bother to explain why the BJP formed a coalition government with the PDP that he is now attacking?” he asked.
आए दिन झूठ बोलना, कपट फैलाना व नए भ्रमजाल गढ़ना मोदी सरकार का चाल-चेहरा-चरित्र बन गया है।— Randeep Singh Surjewala (@rssurjewala) November 17, 2020
शर्म की बात है कि देश के गृहमंत्री श्री अमित शाह राष्ट्रीय सुरक्षा की अपनी जिम्मेदारी दरकिनार कर जम्मू, कश्मीर व लद्दाख पर सरासर झूठी, भ्रामक व शरारतपूर्ण बयानबाजी कर रहे हैं!
हमारा बयान-: pic.twitter.com/AsX67nFI03
He added, “To spread lies, fraud and creating new illusions have become the way of the [Narendra] Modi government. It’s a shame that the home minister is keeping aside the responsibility of the national security and is making false, misleading and mischievous statements on Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh”.
The Congress spokesperson also asked BJP to explain the release of Jaish-e-Mohammed founder Masood Azhar in 1999 and why it allowed Pakistan’s Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) to visit the Pathankot airbase following a terror attack.
“Congress doesn’t need any lesson in nationalism from parties that were slaves or stooges of the British Empire. The nation still remembers the sacrifices of its leaders, including Mahatma Gandhi, former Prime Ministers Indira Gandhi and Rajiv Gandhi,” he added.
The People’s Alliance for Gupkar Declaration or PAGD is a regional and mainstream political party’s alliance in Jammu and Kashmir that includes National Conference, People’s Democratic Party, People’s Conference, Awami National Conference, CPM, CPI, and J&K People’s Movement. The group came into existence on October 15, intending to restore the special status of Jammu and Kashmir that Article 370 had provided.