Question: Amit Shah ji, you said that when you came to power, the biggest achievement was the way you changed the future of Jammu and Kashmir. I personally ask you that do you consider Jammu and Kashmir an achievement during your tenure? And has India given a new statement in the world because of this?
answer: Look, I don’t have any personal achievement. I am a member of Modiji’s cabinet. There is an achievement of the entire cabinet, there is an achievement of the entire government. But yes, the Modi government has made a big change in Jammu and Kashmir. For years it was propagated that Jammu and Kashmir is connected with India because of Article 370. Now there is no article 370, no 35A. Jammu and Kashmir is associated with India. And by propagating about 30 thousand Panch-Sarpanch democracy in Jammu and Kashmir, a new democratic generation is rising there. An investment of 56 thousand crores has come. 80 lakh tourists, which is the maximum after independence, have gone inside Jammu and Kashmir till now. And along with this, for the first time, we have given the status of state languages to our own languages of Jammu and Kashmir.
Those who are backward, dalit, tribal there have got the benefit of reservation. Women have got their rights. The work of providing electricity to every household in Jammu and Kashmir has been completed. The work of providing tap water to every house has been completed. Treatment up to Rs 5 lakh is being given free of cost to every person in Jammu and Kashmir today. And Jammu and Kashmir is achieving new heights of investment. And as far as terrorism is concerned, I can say this much with certainty that from the time terrorism started in the 90s till date, the number of incidents of terrorism and stone pelting has come down to zero. This is a big achievement of the Modi government, there is no doubt about it. And big security pundits used to say that don’t touch Article 370, your hands will get burnt. Article 370 has gone today, Jammu and Kashmir is happy. It has helped a lot in reducing terrorism within the country as well.
Question: Mr. Amit Shah, there is another question attached to this question which many people say was raised through a fake picture. Question of Kashmiri Hindus. Even today he has not been able to return to his home. This is probably a promise of yours for which people are still waiting for its fulfillment. What would you say on this promise?
answer: See Navika ji, this is a relative question. Violence in Jammu and Kashmir Earlier, 400 citizens were considered as such. The goal should be that no one should be killed, it is. But today 12 are dying. We have reached from 400 to 12, so we will do 12 to zero. And the day this happens, there will be a good atmosphere for everyone. And the investment that is going there. Lots of people are going there from outside. But naturally the roots of terrorism and the safe havens of terrorism have gone so deep that it will take time to uproot them. We are currently in process. I assure that we will not allow the roots of terror to spread in Jammu and Kashmir. We are determined to make the entire Jammu and Kashmir terrorism free.
Question: Amit Shah ji, there is a time of 5 years for any political party when there is a review. By the way, elections go on every year, all the time in our country. But Lok Sabha elections come once in every five years. The biggest and toughest test of your manifesto was that of Article 370 which you removed by saying. But there are other promises like Uniform Civil Code. Since four years are about to end after the recent elections. What will be the attitude of the BJP and the government on this? Till now, I feel that one Law Commission, another Law Commission, one suggestion, another suggestion is going on regarding the Uniform Civil Code. When will be the decision?
answer: See, Uniform Civil Code has been our promise to the people of the country in the political journey from Bharatiya Jana Sangh to Bharatiya Janata Party till now. And not only the Bharatiya Janata Party, the Constituent Assembly has also advised the Legislatures across the country and the Parliament that Uniform Civil Code should come in this country whenever the appropriate time comes. There should be no laws on the basis of religion for any secular state. If the nation and state are secular then how can there be laws on the basis of religion? There should be a law for the followers of every religion which should be passed by the Legislature of the country and the Parliament of the country. But with time everyone forgot this point of the Constituent Assembly. Apart from Bharatiya Janata Party, today no party is in favor of Uniform Civil Code. Yes, if you do not have the courage, you will not protest. But they will not say that yes implement, we are standing with you.
We are in a democracy. Healthy debate is necessary in a democracy. When so many political parties have one intention and other political parties have some other intention, whatever may be the intention, to get votes or whatever, but if their intention is that Uniform Civil Code should not be brought now, then it is healthy and Open debate is needed. So, till now we have formed a panel in three states where BJP is ruling, in Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Gujarat. And the panel is headed by a retired judge of the Supreme Court and a retired Chief Justice of the High Court. All the parties, all the people of social life, all the people of all the religious sects, are keeping their side in front of him. We will work on the basis of the advisory given on that. Naturally, there is a healthy debate on this even in this type of summit. So, this helps a lot in making up the minds of the people of the country. I still want to tell the people of the country that the Bharatiya Janata Party is adamant on bringing the Uniform Civil Code and we will bring it but after the end of all democratic discussions.
Question: No one was with you even in the removal of Article 370. But when you started, you did it. Why are you stepping on UCC? Why not telling the timeframe?
Answer: See there is a difference between the two. When Article 370 was brought, our constitution makers had foresight called it a temporary article. At the same time, read the debate on the constitution as well. However, when it was brought up at the last minute, there was no debate, for whatever reason. But the soul of the constitution was that special status cannot remain a part of the constitution. Jammu and Kashmir needs a time to integrate well with India. I think 70 years is a long time, a very long time. There was no need for all other states to give any comment on this because the special status was in only one state. The Governor of Jammu and Kashmir had sent us this request, on the basis of which we had taken this decision, so you cannot weigh Article 370 and UCC in the same scale. There is a fundamental difference between the two.
Question: That means UCC will be there again in the manifesto of 2024?
Answer: Look, time will decide that. Before this, more than two-thirds of the country may install UCC in their own places. So what is left then the Parliament will also have to think. If it doesn’t happen then don’t worry, we are the ones who will come in 2024. We will do it in 2024.