Bringing an end to days of speculation on what is happening in Jammu and Kashmir, the Bharatiya Janata Party on Monday called for the scrapping of Article 370, which gave special status to Jammu and Kashmir and also proposed that the state be bifurcated into two union territories, Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh.
After this, Congress was left-red-faced as many of prominent leaders were seen supporting BJP over scrapping of Article 370. Congress split was wide open as leaders ditched party line on Article 370. Congress leaders and close aides of Rahul Gandhi, Jyotiraditya Scindia and Sachin Pilot, were also seen openly vouching for the revoking of Article 370 -- a move undertaken by arch rivals, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
"I support the move on #JammuAndKashmir & #Ladakh and its full integration into union of India. Would have been better if constitutional process had been followed. No questions could have been raised then. Nevertheless, this is in our country’s interest and I support this," Jyotiraditya M Scindia tweeted.
Deputy Chief Minister Sachin Pilot didn’t directly criticise the BJP government’s decision. However, he condemned the arrests of the former chief ministers of Jammu and Kashmir. He tweeted, “For us to be a progressive, vibrant democracy-all political parties and local representatives needed to be involved. He said that there was no justification for arresting former CMs’, who took oath under the constitution and treating them at par with separatists. “I pray and hope that peace prevails,” Pilot stated in this tweet.
Interestingly, both are the three young guns of the Congress party -- the other one being Rahul Gandhi. Scindia and Pilot have always opposed the BJP at various levels and occasions before this. Not only this, Scindia, Pilot have also been in the running for the party president post ever since Rahul Gandhi quit as the chief. The Twitterverse, hence, looked amused with Pilot, Scindia's support for the Centre's move -- especially considering the tweet that looked more like a message for Rahul Gandhi, rather than India.
Scindia and Pilot's stand gave a minor concession to the party line, that the manner in which it was railroaded through both houses was "undemocratic". As a rash of Congress leaders appear to by defying the headless party, Pilot and Scindia's move may hurt its leadership the most.
Scindia, 48, an aide of Rahul Gandhi, was given the prestigious task of leading the party's national election campaign in Uttar Pradesh along with Priyanka Gandhi Vadra. However, the Congress came a cropper in UP and Scindia himself lost the election. Amid speculation, Scindia attended the CWC meet and was seen in photos shared by the Congress seated next to Priyanka Gandhi Vadra.
Perhaps that would explain the qualifiers many of these leaders advanced after articulating their initial views. A lack of a permanent president after Rahul Gandhi quit the post has put the party in embarrassing situations over the last two months. Or is it that both, Scindia and Pilot, are upset over the top party brass for not selecting them as the party's president? Whatever maybe the reason, Scindia and Pilot's support to BJP could cost the grand old party in the long run.