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Letter to BS: PM should desist from distorting facts for political gains

By omitting the words "irrespective of religion", the Prime Minister was being selective

Business Standard 

PM Narendra Modi in Lok Sabha

It was interesting to watch Prime Minister Narendra Modi falling back on the first prime minister, Jawaharlal Nehru, as many as 23 times in the Lok Sabha last week in an attempt to defend the Citizenship (Amendment) Act. Of course, it was not without a tinge of his usual sarcasms by referring to Nehru as a “big secular person”, “great thinker”, “big visionary” and so on. Latching on to the word “minorities” in the 1950 pact between Nehru and his then Pakistani counterpart Liaquat Ali Khan for the protection of minorities in their respective countries, Modi, looking towards the Congress benches, asked why did Nehru not use the phrase, all citizens, instead of “minorities”? Sadly, the Prime Minister was being less than ingenious in not reading out the very first line of the Nehru-Liaquat Pact of April 1950, which read as under: “The Governments of India and Pakistan solemnly agree that each shall ensure to the minorities through its territory, complete equality of citizenship, irrespective of religion...”

By omitting the words “irrespective of religion”, the Prime Minister was being selective. The recorded eve­nts leading up to the eventual Pa­r­ti­tion do not support the accusation against Nehru. Desist from distorting historical facts for political gains.

S K Choudhury, Bengaluru

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First Published: Sun, February 09 2020. 21:25 IST