#Day30: ‘IIT For Jammu, Bullets For Kashmir?’



Union HRD Minister Prakash Javedakar Inagurated temporary IIT campus in Jammu on August 06, 2016
Union HRD Minister Prakash Javedakar Inagurated temporary IIT campus in Jammu on August 06, 2016

National Conference on Sunday expressed alarm over “BJP’s obvious” intentions to divide J&K into two and further augment the perception of its prejudice against the people of Kashmir.

Lashing out at BJP and Deputy Chief Minister Dr Nirmal Singh, National Conference State Spokesperson Junaid Azim Mattu said the timing of IIT Jammu inauguration was “insensitive” towards the people of Kashmir and underlined the party’s contempt towards the sentiment in the Valley.

“When you cut ribbons in Jammu at a time when Kashmir is on fire and when coffins of young boys are being lowered into graves here, it highlights your abject lack of humanity and empathy. How would people in Jammu have felt if an IIT was being inaugurated in Kashmir Valley at a time of similar grief and mass mourning in Jammu? This act of insensitivity and ruthlessness perfectly exemplifies BJP’s politics in J&K,” the NC Spokesperson said in a statement issued from Party Headquarters in Srinagar on Sunday.

The NC Spokesperson said the fact that BJP and the Deputy CM “didn’t require” the Chief Minister’s presence for the function in Jammu speaks louder than words.

“This also raises serious questions on the writ and integrity of the Chief Minister’s office. Has Mehbooba Mufti in turn outsourced Jammu to the BJP? It’s evident that we have two factions within the Government in a mutual understanding where BJP gives PDP its patronage and the PDP Chief Minister in turn surrenders her constitutional authority and allows BJP to disrespect and humiliate the people of Kashmir,” the NC Spokesperson added.

The NC Spokesperson said BJP was “clearly invested in dividing the State” on the basis of religion and while their Ministers were virtually missing from the Valley during the current unrest, they were in perfect attendance to inaugurate an IIT in Jammu.

“While our hospitals are overflowing with thousands of trauma cases and our doctors are starved for supplies and support, the Health Minister who belongs to BJP hasn’t considered it important to regularly visit the hospitals and take stock of the situation there. We haven’t seen a single BJP Minister attend to their sworn duties in the Valley in the past one month but when it comes to Jammu – their priorities are evident,” the NC Spokesperson said.

“Dr Nirmal Singh should have the courage to openly state that he is the Deputy Chief Minister of Jammu City alone and his Cabinet Colleagues from the BJP must follow suit. Their condescending, prejudiced and blatantly communal attitude towards Kashmiris is appalling and extremely contemptible – especially at a time of such suffering in the Valley,” the NC Spokesperson said.

The NC Spokesperson lashed out at the State Government and Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti for their silence on the persecution of a young Kashmiri professional in Chattisgarh and asked the State Government to extend all possible legal aid and support to the arrested young professional who has been booked in a case of sedition for sharing a social media post.

“Seems like Mehbooba Mufti and her Government have given a nod to all BJP-led State Governments to persecute and prosecute Kashmiri students and professionals there. Her failure to take this matter up with the Chief Minister of Chattisgarh exposes all her claims and rhetoric. We have spoken to the family of the young professional and they have expressed helplessness and dismay at the refusal of proper legal support to their son and raised concerns over his safety in police custody. The State Government’s silence on this amounts to complicity. The same Mehbooba who jumped on the rooftops of cars as an opposition leader to reap the political dividends of someone else’s grief is now completely comfortable with a young Kashmiri being hounded, booked and tried for sharing a Facebook post,” the NC Spokesperson added.

The NC Spokesperson also expressed amusement at the ridiculous eye-wash of an RSS backed “think-tank” being mistaken to think that they have the mandate or the credibility to make an offer of dialogue on Kashmir.

“What could be more insulting and humiliating for Kashmiris? From dialogue offers having been extended directly from serving Prime Ministers in the past, it seems Kashmiris will now have to make do with Ram Madhav and RSS affiliates. Is the Prime Minister too important to consider what’s happening in Kashmir worthy of a statement or an offer of dialogue? These eye-washes are part of the old, conventional formulations of deflecting responsibility when it comes to Kashmir and wont yield anything – it will only augment the anger and alienation on the ground,” the NC Spokesperson added.

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