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PM Modi is attacking an imagined ghost, says P Chidambaram

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039;Azadi' actually means 'autonomy' for most Kashmiris Chidambaram

Reacting sharply, the BJP said, it was not surprising to see Chidambaram make such comments given his leader supported those who gave slogan of "Bharat teretukdehonge", an apparent reference to Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi. "It was the flawed policy of the Congress right since 1947 which is responsible for the Kashmir problem", Jaitley said.

Former chief ministers and National Conference leaders Omar and Farooq Abdullah have jumped in the controversy which has erupted over senior Congress leader P Chidambaram's call for more autonomy for the state of Jammu and Kashmir.

"The recently announced initiative through a representative of the Government of India should have clarity and seriousness of objective to ensure the sanctity of the institution of dialogue is restored and upheld", the party resolution said. "Therefore, I think we should seriously examine that question and consider on what areas we can give autonomy to Jammu and Kashmir", he was quoted as saying by the Indian Express. However he added that it will remain a part of India but will have larger powers as promised under Article 370.

"It is quite shocking and disgusting that P Chidambaram former union minister speaks about breaking the Union of India into pieces". The Congress has distanced itself from the statement and described it as the "opinion of an individual".

Calling for a political initiative, the party said a singular focus on military and operational mechanism to deal with the Kashmir issue "in the absence of a political initiative" is a "dangerous" approach and continues to alienate the people.

Yesterday, senior Congress leader P Chidambaram had pitched for greater autonomy for Jammu and Kashmir, saying his interactions with people had led him to conclude that "when Kashmiris ask for azadi, mostly, I am not saying all. the overwhelming majority. want autonomy". He termed the Congress the "architect of the present mess" in the state.

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