Dr shayama Prasad Mookerjee martyrdom didn't go in vain. With the abrogation of Article 370, thousands of families who were deprived of their constitutional rights for decades stand to benefit. The cause of 'Ek Vidhan, Ek Nishan, Ek Pradhan' for which Dr Mookerjee fought his entire life has fructified now.
- Ronik Sharma
The supreme sacrifice of Dr Shayama Prasad Mookerjee was an eye opener for the believers of Nationalism who were working for the unity and integrity of Bharat. He was a devout patriot, a proud nationalist and great son of Maa Bharati. His supreme sacrifice for Bharat and his call for 'Ek Vidhan, Ek Nishan, Ek Pradhan' are our guiding force even today.
Dr Mookerjee not only devoted his life for India’s unity and integrity but inspired crores of Nationalists to follow the path of National integration and unity of the country. Dr Mookerjee was not only a visionary but emerged as a stalwart of the India's integration and voice of the masses. His devotion for India’s National integrity and unity is still a guiding force.
Dr Shyama Prasad Mookerjee had held the portfolio of Minister of Industries and Supplies in the first Indian cabinet from 1947 to 1950. Post his resignation, he devoted his life for Social service activities and give his full time to it. He was the founder of the Bhartiya Jana Sangh and first president of the same.
In 1952, the Jan Sangh won 3 seats in the Lok Sabha elections, with Mookerjee himself winning from Kolkata South. Dr Mookerjee who was also the president of Akhil Bharatiya Hindu Mahasabha fought against Pakistan and extremists influence in Kashmir. He was totally against the practice of separatism and did not support the discriminatory Article 370 for the erstwhile State of Jammu and Kashmir. He also believed that it would become a threat to the unity and integrity of the country.
On 26 November 1949, the Constitution of India was adopted. However, it came into full effect from 26 January 1950. Article 370 was added under 'Temporary, Transitional and Special provisions". The erstwhile state of Jammu & Kashmir was to be governed under the provisions of Article 370. All the provisions of the Constitution were not applicable to J&K. For example, till 1965 J&K had a Sadr-e-Riyasat for governor and Prime Minister in place of Chief Minister. Due to the discriminatory provisions of Article 370 and further political and administrative developments, the erstwhile Jammu Kashmir State was given a separate Constitution, a separate flag and a separate Prime Minister. One had to take special permission from him if they had to enter the state of J&K. This was totally arbitrary and unconstitutional which was clearly a violation of the fundamental rights of every individual and even as every other state in India followed one rule except Jammu Kashmir.
SP Mookerjee fought against this injustice both inside and outside parliament and wanted to get rid of special provisions to J&K. In May 1953, Dr Mookerjee decided to enter erstwhile State of Jammu Kashmir without taking any permission because under the provisions of permit system in J&K. no body was allowed to enter J&K State without prior permission. When he had started his journey against illegall conditions of the permit system everyone was thinking he will be arrested soon by the then Punjab government and he would never be allowed to enter Jammu and Kashmir without permission. Even Jawaharlal Nehru Government at Centre and the then J&K government had planned a strategy that would end Mookerjee struggle for ever.
The Nehru Government was also worried if Mookerjee was not allowed to enter J&K, it may lead to problematic situation and many other questions would be raised on the integration of J&K State with the rest of the country.
At Madhopur on 11 May 1953, Dr. Mookerjee was arrested under Public safety Act by the then inspector general of J&K State and was not allowed to proceed further. Later on he was detained and was put under police custody and stationed in a small house designed as a sub-Jail for next few weeks and on June 23, 1953 around at 3:40 A.M his companions were informed for his untimely demise. Dr Mookerjee's untimely demise (martyrdom) sent shockwaves among supporters and his followers. His vision had clearly depicted the practice of separatism would lead to destruction of erstwhile State of Jammu and Kashmir and public will suffer at large due to Separate Constitutional provisions added in Articles 370.
Now, after the lapse of more than seven decades the residents of the Jammu and Kashmir have realised, after the abrogation of both the discriminatory Articles 370 and 35 A, how the Nehru and Sheikh Abdullah governments had betrayed the common masses during their tenure in State and Central governments.
Dr Shyama Prasad Mookerjee martyrdom didn't go in vain. His right approach towards the Nation building has benefited thousands of families. The practice of separatism directly impacted such families who are residing in erstwhile State of Jammu and Kashmir who were deprived of their constitutional rights for seven decades. Kashmir Centric politics and Political rulers destroyed Jammu and Kashmir very badly and blocked the economical growth and development in whole of the erstwhile State of Jammu and Kashmir.
Article 370 benefited only a few kashmir based families belong to particular religion and region. All others who struggled and suffered waited for so many years for its removal. Due to reorganization of the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir, the new constitutional and political developments in union territory of Jammu and Kashmir not only ended the practice of separatism but also strengthened the nationalist ideology. It caused huge damage to separatists and anti-national forces. With the abrogation of article 370, the dream of Dr Shayama Prasad Mookerjee has been fulfilled and his soul will surely be rejoicing in the heaven.
(The author is an Advocate based in Jammu)