‘In 1948, Nehru was reluctant to send troops to Kashmir’

Days after he claimed that Jawaharlal Nehru had called Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel a "total communalist" for insisting on police action against the Nizam in 1948, BJP patriarch LK Advani Thursday alleged that Nehru was also reluctant to send the Army to Kashmir when Pakistan invaded the state that year.

Citing an old interview of Sam Manekshaw, who was a Colonel then and had accompanied the then Home Secretary V P Menon to formalise accession of Kashmir, Advani sought to suggest that it was at the insistence of Patel that the Army was sent to safeguard Srinagar from Pakistan-backed invaders.

"The cabinet meeting was presided by Mountbatten. There was Jawaharlal Nehru, there was Sardar Patel, there was Sardar Baldev Singh . As usual Nehru talked about the UN, Russia, Africa, God almighty, everybody, until 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.' And before he could say anything Patel turned to me and said, 'You have got your orders'," Advani wrote on his blog, quoting Manekshaw from the interview by journalist Prem Shankar Jha.

"This report... provides a clinching confirmation of the difference between Nehru and Patel over the Hyderabad action," Advani wrote, rejecting attempts by the Congress to dismiss his earlier allegation that there were differences between the two over the modalities of integration of India.

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