It has been more than two years that A G Noorani’s important book ‘Article 370 : A Constitutional History of J and K’ (OUP, 2011, Pages 480) has hit the stands and has been able to clear many a confusions about the tumultuous era in post independence times pertaining to Jammu and Kashmir.
Basing himself on authentic documents, letters, memorandums, white papers, proclamations and amendments the author, a constitutional expert himself, has not only provided new insights about the period but has also tried to bring forth an important summary of the developments then and the role played by different stakeholders. While we have been witness to a process of erosion of the article 370 today, the book underscores the politics behind its erosion, which was negotiated between Prime ministers Jawaharlal Nehru and Sheikh Abdullah and had a stamp of approval from Sardar Patel and Shyama Prasad Mukherjee.
For the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which daily invokes name of Shyama Prasad Mukherjee, founder of Bharatiya Jan Sangh – percursor to its present incarnation namely BJP – to oppose Article 370 which guarantees special status to Jammu and Kashmir – this exposure that the said Article had full approval from Mukherjee as well as then Home Minister Sardar Patel is nothing but blasphemous. Continue reading Can The Real Shyama Prasad Mukherjee Ever Stand Up?