Bengal Left parties rally against scrapping of Article 370

Kolkata, Aug 5 (IANS) Leaders of Left parties in West Bengal on Monday termed the scrapping of Article 370 of the Constitution as an "attack on the country's integrity, democracy and federal structure" as they took out a rally here accusing the Centre of "further complicating" the situation in Jammu and Kashmir.

The Modi government on Monday took a historic decision by revoking Article 370 of the Constitution that grants special status to Jammu and Kashmir.

The protest rally led by by senior Left leaders from the state including Left Front Chairman Biman Bose, CPI-M General Secretary Surjya Kanta Misra, former CPI-M MP Mohammad Salim, started from the Lenin statue in central Kolkata.

The Left activists carried large banners with messages like 'protest against heinous attack on democracy in Kashmir' and shouted slogans against the BJP government's move, terming it a "fascist attitude that will impact the integrity of the entire nation".

"This attack on democracy will hamper the integrity and harmony of the nation's people. It is not the right way to solve any problem. Through this move, the special status that was given to Jammu and Kashmir during its integration with India has been snatched away," LF Chairman Bose said.

"The impact of this move will not only be limited to Kashmir. It will impact the entire nation. It will be harmful for the integrity of the nation and its democratic system," he said.

Accusing the centre of not having transparency in the issue, CPI-M politburo member Salim said the government has broken a pledge that was made to the people of Kashmir decades ago.

"Kashmir had a special status and people there had some special rights. It was given to them by the Constitution, government, parliament and people of India. That's why the people of Kashmir became a part of our secular democratic nation and did not become a part of Pakistan. Today PM Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah have broken that promise made towards Kashmir for their own political benefits," Salim alleged.

"Today Shah has proposed to revoke that special status by proposing to scrap Article 370. This government came to power by taking about transparency. Where is the transparency in this issue? We believe it is an attack on the country's democracy, federal structure and constitution," he added.

--IANS

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