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'.

"And before he could say anything Sardar Patel turned to me and said, 'You have got your orders'," Advani said, quoting Manekshaw from the interview to Jha.

The Indian forces were then flown to Srinagar to fight the Pakistani forces and the Muslim soldiers of Hari Singh who had defected to Pakistan.

"This report, involving Manekshaw and Prem Shankar Jha, provides a clinching confirmation of the difference between Nehru and Patel over the Hyderabad action," Advani said.

On November 5, Advani had written a blog where he quoted from the memoirs of MKK Nair, a 1947 batch IAS officer, to say that Nehru had called Patel a "total communalist" when the latter said at a Cabinet meeting that "police action" will have to be taken against Hyderabad as it was trying to join Pakistan.

Advani indicated that he wrote the blog today to counter the Congress reaction to his last posting, based on Nair's book, that the IAS officer's report about a clash between Nehru and Patel on the issue of armed action against the Nizam is "all bunkum".

The senior BJP leader also claimed that Britain sought to thwart Jammu and Kashmir's accession to India. Both the Indian and Pakistani army were headed by British generals in 1947-48.

Quoting from a website on Gen Roy Bucher, the then Commander-in-Chief of the Indian army, Advani says he was opposed to police action in Kashmir and told a Cabinet meeting that it is not possible to bring the whole of Jammu and Kashmir under control as the British were supporting Pakistan.

Pakistan suspected that the Maharaja wanted to accede to India and tried to pre-empt his decision by forcibly seizing the state.

Gen Bucher told the Cabinet that if his advice against police action in Kashmir was not followed he would resign. "There was a silence while a distressed and worried Nehru looked around. Patel replied, 'You may resign General Bucher, but the police action will start tomorrow'," Advani said, quoting from the website.

The British did not want a Indo-Pak war, he added. "The British clearly did not want the whole of Jammu and Kashmir to go to India. There was a widespread feeling in London that if India was in control of areas contiguous to Pakistan, the latter would not survive," Advani said.

But the website gives credit to Nehru, saying he had decided to strike at the bases of the raiders in Pakistan though Mountbatten was opposed to this.


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