Jammu & Kashmir

‘Tum abhi chup raho’: Modi silenced me on lapses leading to Pulwama attack: Satya Pal Malik

A file photo of Lethpora Pulwama attack in which 49 armed forces personnel were killed on February 14, 2019.

‘Attack was being turned towards Pakistan to blame them for attack for electoral benefit of BJP’

New Delhi: Satya Pal Malik, the last Governor of the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir who oversaw heightened times that include the abrogation of Article 370, stated in an interview that the Prime Minister of India Narendra squelched him by saying “tum abhi chup raho” when he as governor reported that the GoI’s own mistakes were to blame for the Pulwama attack.

In an interview with Karan Thapar for The Wire, Malik said that he was forced to be silent from talking about the lapses that led to the ]attack on a CRPF convoy in Pulwama in February 2019 when he was governor of the state.

Terming the attack as the result of utter ignorance of the Indian system and specifically the CRPF and the home ministry, he said despite asking for aircraft, as demanded by the CRPF, to transport armed forces personnel, the Home Ministry rejected the request. Rajnath Singh was home minister when the attack happened.

Most shocking among his claims was his realization that the attack was being turned towards Pakistan to blame them for the attack for the electoral benefit of the BJP. Malik said he was asked by PM Modi and NSA chief Ajit Doval to remain silent about the lapses in intelligence and the system regarding the Pulwama attack, as the party wanted to gain from it ahead of the Lok Sabha elections

He also talked about the RSS member Ram Madhav pursue him to clear a hydroelectric scheme and a Reliance insurance scheme when he was governor of Kashmir.

Even after an abrupt refusal of his proposal, Malik said Madhav came to see him at seven in the morning to try and get him to change his mind. Malik says at the time people were telling him that he could get Rs 300 crore for clearing both schemes.

He also accused Modi of being indifferent to corruption, citing his own removal from the governorship of Goa in August 2020 after he had informed Modi of several instances of corruption that were ignored by the government.

Malik claimed that corruption is rampant among the prime minister’s associates, who often invoke the PMO’s name. Despite bringing this to Modi’s attention, Malik said that Modi seemed unconcerned.

He further alleged that all appointments made by President Droupadi Murmu are reviewed by the PMO, citing the incident when an appointment he had been given as governor was cancelled at the last minute while he was on his way to Rashtrapati Bhavan.

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