13:02 GMT19 January 2021
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    New Delhi (Sputnik): India’s opposition Congress Party leader and former Minister of Home Affairs P Chidamaram has claimed that the government would not have "snatched away" the special status of Jammu and Kashmir had it been a Hindu-dominated state.

    Chidamabaram has accused Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi of using force to abrogate Article 370 and blacking out the ground situation by snapping communication links with the state.

    "Had Hindus been in majority in Kashmir, BJP wouldn't have touched it (Article 370), but because there is a Muslim majority in Kashmir, they abrogated it", Chidambaram alleged in the southern city of Chennai.

    The former minister also said that the Congress Party would continue to fight until the status of Jammu and Kashmir was restored. “The struggle has only begun now and we will fight till the end”.

    Chidambaram’s statement has sparked a major controversy and many blamed the former minister for communalising full integration of Kashmir with India.

    Giriraj Singh, a minister in the Modi Cabinet, said that the comments made by Chidambaram "is for appeasement whereas the work done by Amit Shah and PM Modi has fulfilled the dreams of Sardar Patel; the people are really happy with the decision".

    Indian filmmaker and social activist Ashoke Pandit, himself a Kashmiri Brahmin, lambasted Chidambaram and said: "If Hindus would have been in majority, their mass exodus wouldn’t have happened. You are the creator of my genocide Mr. Chidambaram".

    ​Earlier this month, the Indian government abrogated Article 370 of the country's Constitution that had granted special status to Jammu and Kashmir since 1947 and divided it into two federally administered territories.

    Kashmir has been a bone of contention between India and Pakistan since the countries gained freedom from British colonial rule in 1947. Both nations govern different parts of the region but claim it in its entirety. The rivals have also fought two wars over Kashmir.


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