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Nehru was reluctant to send troops to Kashmir in 1947: Advani

After claiming that Jawaharlal Nehru had called Sardar Patel a ‘total communalist’, BJP leader LK Advani on Thursday stoked a fresh controversy saying the then prime minister was reluctant to send army to Kashmir in 1947 even as Pakistani troops approached, but the home minister prevailed over him.

Quoting from an interview of Sam Manekshaw (then a Colonel) by senior journalist Prem Shankar Jha, Advani said in his latest blog that as the tribesmen- supported by Pakistani forces- moved closer to Srinagar, a decision had to be taken on moving Indian forces there.

However, Nehru appeared reluctant and felt the issue should be taken to the UN. Referring to Manekshaw’s claim in the interview, Advani said Lord Mountbatten called a Cabinet meeting soon after Maharaja Hari Singh signed the Instrument of Accession. This was attended by Nehru, Patel and defence minister Baldev Singh.

Manekshaw presented the ‘military situation’ in the meeting and suggested the Indian forces be moved there.

‘As usual Nehru talked about the United Nations, Russia, Africa, God almighty, everybody, until Sardar Patel lost his temper. He said, ‘Jawaharlal, do you want Kashmir, or do you want to give it away’. He (Nehru) said, ‘Of course, I want Kashmir. Then he (Patel) said 'Please give your orders’.
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