Free Press Journal

Don’t teach us Patriotism: Modi tells opposition


Narendra Modi

New Delhi: Kashmiri separatist leader Masrat Alam was released without taking the central government into confidence, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Monday, and asked the opposition not to teach him “patriotism”. Making an intervention in the Lok Sabha, Modi said it was legitimate for the house to show its anger on the issue.

“I assure the nation and the house that after the Jammu and Kashmir government was formed, proceedings are taking place without taking the Indian government into confidence,” the prime minister said. “I associate with the concern and anger in the house,” he said.

Modi asked leaders in the Lok Sabha not to make a political issue of the matter, and said: “At least on the issue of separatists and terrorism, the country should not think on party lines. “The BJP is in a coalition with the PDP government in Jammu and Kashmir. You should criticise the government, but the world should not get a message that the country is divided on the issue of its unity and integrity.”

“I want to assure that the government will not accept any such incident. We will not compromise on the country’s unity and integrity,” he added. Alam, who was arrested during the 2010 unrest in the Kashmir Valley for allegedly inciting youth, was released by the newly-installed PDP-BJP coalition government on Saturday.

Modi said there is no reason for his government to keep quiet on the matter. “We have sacrificed Shyama Prasad Mukherjee for this… Please do not teach us patriotism.” “We have asked for certain clarifications from the Jammu and Kashmir government as the home minster (Rajnath Singh) said and after that comes, we will inform the house.”

The prime minister’s intervention came after opposition leaders disrupted proceedings of the house demanding a statement from him. The Lok Sabha was briefly adjourned in the morning over the issue.