Madhya Pradesh assembly election: Unfortunate that Sardar Patel couldn’t be PM, says Shivraj, blames Nehru for Kashmir crisis

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New Delhi | Updated: December 07, 2018 1:41 PM

Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan attacked the first Prime Minister of independent India Jawahar Lal Nehru and said that had the Kashmir crisis been in the hands of Sardar Patel, then its one-third part wouldn't be with Pakistan.

Madhya Pradesh assembly poll 2018: CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan hails Sardar Patel, blames ex-PM Jawahar Lal Nehru for Kashmir crisis (Image: ANI)

The war of words between ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and opposition Congress has been escalating in Madhya Pradesh as the assembly elections approach. On Wednesday, Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan attacked the first Prime Minister of independent India Jawahar Lal Nehru and said that had the Kashmir crisis been in the hands of Sardar Patel, then its one-third part wouldn’t be with Pakistan. Remembering Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel on his 143rd birth anniversary today, the Chief Minister said that India is unified because of him. He also slammed the Congress party and said that India was unfortunate that Patel was not its Prime Minister.

“Had he not been there, India wouldn’t have been unified. Had Kashmir been in his hands instead of Jawaharlal Nehru, its 1/3rd part wouldn’t have been with Pakistan. India was unfortunate that Sardar Patel wasn’t its PM. What Congress did to him, need not be said again,” Chouhan said at a rally during his ‘Janadesh Yatra’.

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Criticising the grand-old party, the Chief Minister further said that the party never gave due respect to Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel. He also congratulated Prime Minister Narendra Modi for unveiling the ‘State of Unity’, the world’s tallest statue of Sardar Patel. “Congress never gave due respect to Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel. It forgot him, who unified India. I congratulate the PM that he unveiled the world’s tallest statue of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel today. That is the true tribute to him,” said Chouhan, reports ANI.

Chouhan’s remarks come in the backdrop of an aggressive campaign by the Congress which is hoping to return to power and displace the BJP which is seeking its fourth consecutive term. Congress president Rahul Gandhi has come down heavily on the BJP government in the state on issues of corruption. In a recent, goof-up, Rahul had mistakenly said that Chouhan’s son was named in the Panama Papers scandal but no action was taken. Clarifying later, he said that there was so much corruption in BJP rule that he got confused. He then hit out at Chouhan over alleged scam in e-tendering and Vyapam recruitments.

Watch: Shivraj Singh Chouhan’s visit to Damoh

Elections in the state are scheduled for a single phase on November 28, 2018, for all 230 assembly constituencies. The Model Code of Conduct kicked in on October 6, 2018, soon after the announcement of election schedule in the state by the Election Commision of India.

Earlier in the day, Prime Minister Narendra Modi unveiled the ‘Statue of Unity’ at Gujarat’s Kevadiya and dedicated it to the nation. The statue was built in honour of Sardar Patel, popularly known as an ‘Iron Man of India’. Unveiling the 182-metre long statue, Prime Minister said that the statue will remind the world about the courage of the man who unified India.

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