Former Army Chief Gen VK Singh, who sparked a political storm by claiming that certain Jammu and Kashmir ministers received funds from the Army, on Thursday said the money was used only to bring harmony and stability in the state and not misused.
"Let me clarify categorically. No Army funds have been misused in Kashmir. They have been used in Kashmir to bring in harmony, to ensure stability in that state,to ensure youth get involved in activities which are beneficial for them and for the state and for development and infrastructure," he said.
He was replying to a question from a student at Loyola college, while participating in a panel discussion on corruption.
Asked by reporters later if he had 'let out a secret' by publicy mentioning the funds, Gen Singh said whatever he had stated had already been revealed by former US Ambassador to India David Mulford in 2011, which was reported in an English daily.
"What secret has been revealed by me was already revealed by (former US Ambassador to India) David Mulford, published in the Economic Times on September 5, 2011. Please read it. David Mulford said everybody in Kashmir gets money and I said the same thing. I have not revealed anything," he said.
Singh had claimed that money was paid to certain ministers in Kashmir, drawing angry responses. Singh's assertion that the funds meant for stability purposes since Independence was rebuffed by eight former Army Chiefs.
On recent incidents of violence along the Line of Control with Pakistan, he primarily attributed it to intelligence failure and 'tinkering' with the intelligence apparatus.
"When you start tinkering with the intelligence apparatus of this country and of the Army, things will go wrong. And we have seen in the recent few days on how secrets were let out."