Arun Jaitley had termed the special status of Kashmir a "historic blunder". (File Photo)
Former finance minister and prominent BJP leader Arun Jaitley died at the age of 66 in Delhi’s AIIMS Hospital on Saturday. Jaitley, who was suffering from multiple diseases, was admitted in AIIMS on August 9, 2019. After battling for life for more than two weeks, Jaitley breathed his last at 12:07 pm today. The former finance minister, known for carrying out major economic reforms during his tenure, had taken a break from active politics and turned down an offer by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to be a part of his Cabinet.
However, he continued supporting and defending the BJP government through his blogs on social media. In his last blog titled 'PM Narendra Modi and HM Amit Shah Achieve the Impossible', Jaitley had hailed Centre’s move to scrap provisions of Article 370 in Jammu and Kashmir and bifurcate the state into two Union Territories.
"The J&K history of the past seven decades shows that the journey of this separate Status has been towards separatism and not integration. It created a separatist psyche. Pakistan was more than enthusiastic in trying to exploit the situation," he wrote.
Terming the special status of Kashmir a "historic blunder", Jaitley said that removal of the Article 370 proved that Syama Prasad Mookerjee’s vision for the Valley was correct, while Jawaharlal Nehru’s "dream solution proved to be a failure".
"In the last seven decades, attempts to resolve the issue proved a disaster, PM Modi decided to follow an alternative approach. The present decision makes it clear that just as the rule of law prevails in other parts of the country, it will equally prevail in the Kashmir Valley," the blog read.
Hailing the prime minister, Jaitley further said that PM Modi created history by striping Kashmir of its special status as the decision needed determination and political courage.
"The decision to reverse the situation created by Panditji needed clarity, vision and determination. It also needed political courage. The Prime Minister has created history through his absolute clarity and determination," he added.