Crackdown on youth reflects NC’s use and throw policy: Mehbooba

KL Report

SRINAGAR

Condemning the indiscriminate arrest of the youth in the Valley Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) president, Mehbooba Mufti has said the participation in the elections offers the only route to take Kashmir out of repression, injustice and fear.

Addressing a number of rallies in Rafiabad segment of Baramulla constituency, Mehbooba said hundreds of youth have been locked up across the Srinagar Lok Sabha constituency and rural areas of Kashmir to create an atmosphere of uncertainty and fear. “While in Srinagar this has been done ahead of elections, in South Kashmir it followed polling, apparently in accordance with a plan,” she said and added that they benefited from them in South Kashmir and then cracked down on them following the traditional use and throw policy of the NC.

She said the fact that the government has to resort to such draconian methods at the end of its six years rule and deny young men their right to vote by putting them in jails is a sad commentary on the failures of the National Conference-Congress government.

The PDP president said in 2008 even after the state was on a boil in the aftermath of Amarnath agitation people came out in large numbers to participate in elections because their faith in the electoral system had been revived by the PDP-led government.

“Our party had been cautioning that the reversal of the policies of the previous government would lead to further alienation have, unfortunately, come true and the state government is now resorting to illegitimate methods to subdue the anger against it. It is sad that while elections should have been a time to celebrate the right to choose a government in Kashmir the occasion has been converted into terrorization of people especially the youth,” said Mehbooba.

Appealing the people to vote for the PDP candidate, Muzaffar Hussain Baig, Mehbooba said her party is not seeking a mandate for some of its leaders to occupy ministerial chairs in Delhi, but its aim is to end repression and terror which keeps revisiting Kashmir every now and then.

She said the ruling government has blocked all avenues for the youth to grow in a free and conducive atmosphere that could bring out the best of their talent. “Instead of providing such atmosphere, upgrading educational and skill development facilities and creating new job opportunities in line with requirements of the 21st century, the NC is pushing the youth to stone throwing and even picking up arms once again as was reflected in the sad story of Abdul Haq of Shopian.”

Mehbooba said the PDP is going to the Parliament with a positive agenda to push for a peaceful settlement of Jammu & Kashmir which was possible only through friendship between India and Pakistan and building of trust deficit between New Delhi and Kashmir. “Our party would forcefully and sincerely voice the concerns of people of J&K, their aspirations and would seek consensus at the national level for the peaceful settlement of the political issue, which had been till now missing as National Conference would use its mandate just to secure jobs for the members of Abdullah family,” she said.

“The aspirations of people of the state and their issues are priority before the PDP unlike the NC which considers power and luxury for itself as the only reason for holding elections,” she said adding that had NC not taken people for granted Kashmiris would not have been suffering this time and would not had lost many generations to the bad times.

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