Jammu, Aug 12: Against the backdrop of ongoing controversy on Article 35A, Union Minister of State in PMO Dr Jitendra Singh today said that there is no threat to the coalition government in Jammu and Kashmir and asked PDP-BJP not to pay attention to criticism from opposition.
“There is not any threat to the PDP-BJP coalition government in Jammu and Kashmir. The government is stable and functioning well,” Dr Singh here told reporters.
“If opposition leaders want to go to the people and place their view point on Article 35A and Article 370, they are welcome,” he said and added, “no chance will be given to them to topple government before the elections. We are not going to oblige them.”
However, Dr Singh asked the coalition partners to concentrate on development works and welfare of people and not to look at criticism from opposition.
“These are small controversies being raked up by leaders in the opposition who are out of power,” he said adding, “government should focus on day to day problems and needs of people.”
On Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti’s recent meeting in New Delhi on Article 35A and followed by tweets from National Conference working president Omar Abdullah, he said, “anybody’s twitter cannot decide what the Prime Minister has said.”
Meanwhile on Doklam standoff, Dr Singh said that India’s position was strong and there should not be any cause of concern.
On prevailing situation along Indo-Pak borders in Jammu and Kashmir, the Union MoS said, “the way India has now been retaliating to Pakistan’s unprovoked ceasefire violations, was never happened in the past so many years and at the same time terrorists were under pressure due to large scale operations launched by our security forces in the hinterland.”
Jitendra played down the heightened rhetoric by Beijing over the Dokalam standoff, stating that India was fully equipped to face any challenge.
He said the government was confident about the steps it was taking in this regard. “We are well equipped to face any challenge whether externally or internally,” Singh said.
The MoS PMO was responding to a question about the recent ‘threat’ by China through its official media asking India to withdraw troops from the Sikkim sector.
“I think for us the more important thing is to see what we are doing. I am not here to respond to what somebody is tweeting from the opposition parties. We are confident about what we are doing,” he said.
China had recently said that it had conveyed its firm stand to India that it must take “concrete actions” by immediately pulling back troops from Doklam in the Sikkim section with “no strings attached” to resolve the current standoff.
The BJP leader also said that the government was giving “befitting reply” with regard to ceasefire violations on the Indo-Pakistan border, and was dealing with terrorism in Kashmir with a “stern hand”.
On appearance of militant Zakir Musa’s posters in Kashmir asking youths and students to keep away from Independence day functions, Singh said such posters have come up in the past too.
“The government will take a call on this. The more these (terrorist) leaders come up with such things, the more they expose themselves. The youths cannot be threatened by the diktats of these militants,” he said.
The Union minister also hailed the “proactive” role of security forces on the borders.
“It is going to reap results sooner or later. I am sure this (proactive role of forces) will bring terrorism to its logical conclusion,” he said.
Replying to a question on Uttar Pradesh governor directing all madrasas to sing the national song on Independence day, Singh said, “Vande Mataram is a symbol of India’s national ethos. It is, therefore, wrong to associate it with any particular religion or sect”.
“We need to educate the masses on this more intensely. Vande Mataram was composed in 1870. It later become a national song in tribute to martyrs, irrespective of religion. It is a poem which became an unifying force in pre-Independence and post-Independence era. How can this be a dividing force? It has been wrongly perceived”.
On the recent infant deaths at a hospital in Uttar Pradesh for want of oxygen, the Union minister said, “I am sure there is a responsible government in the state. We have a CM who is extremely proactive. Whatever is required, will be done. What has happened is bad and all of us feel for it.”