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MLA Kulgam, Mohammad Yousuf Tarigami, addressing media at his Gupkar residence on Sep 28, 2016. (KL Image: Bilal Bahadur)
MLA Kulgam, Mohammad Yousuf Tarigami, addressing media at his Gupkar residence on Sep 28, 2016. (KL Image: Bilal Bahadur)

Communist lawmaker representing Kulgam assembly segment in J&K Legislative Assembly, Mohammad Yousuf Tarigami, on Wednesday said that he and his party, Communist Party of India (Marxist), does not stand for plebiscite in Jammu and Kashmir. He, however, advocated dialogue between India and Pakistan to resolve the long standing dispute.

Tarigami termed “shelving” of recommendations made by All Party Delegation (APD) by Union government as “unfortunate”. APD, headed by Home Minister Rajnath Singh, visited Kashmir in August.

The lone Communist lawmaker said that his party doesn’t support the on-going “repression in Kashmir” in the name of ‘Operation Calm Down’.

Addressing a press conference at his Gupkar residence, Tarigami said, “the indiscriminate arrests, slapping of PSAs and damaging and ransacking of houses and private properties will further alienation.”

He referred to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s “Vikaas and Vishwaas”. “How will raids, arrests, use of draconian PSA and ransacking of houses create Vishwaas (trust),” he asked.

At least 89 civilians and over 13500 others were injured since the mass uprising was triggered after popular militant commander Burhan Wani was killed on July 08, 2016.

He questioned the “way” men in uniform and other security agencies are behaving post launch of ‘Operation Calm Down’. “We are not with the operation,” he said, “is it a sign of democratic India, Constitution and law?”

“In the name of quote-unquote disorder,” he said, “the men in uniform are resorting to unlawful actions.”

He said solution to current situation was not in sending more and more forces personnel to Valley. “This will not help nor will it bring normalcy,” he said, “we won’t accept silence of graveyard but concrete and sustainable steps need to be taken to resolve the issues.”

For this, he said, the government of India should form a committee comprised of senior parliamentarians and not “just interlocutors”. “An unconditional dialogue must start will all stakeholders,” he said.

Tarigami asked government of India to form a judicial commission headed by a retired Supreme Court Judge. “So that people, not only in Kashmir, but in Jammu and other parts of India come to know as who was killed, whose (son/daughter) was killed, how killings took place and who is the killer?”

He, however, expressed dissatisfaction as how Delhi responded to the crisis. “We (CPI-m) demanded, inside and outside parliament, that infamous pellet gun must be banned but its indiscriminate use continues till today.”

Seeking immediate halt to ‘tood-phood’, the MLA Kulgam said, “accountability is must in the present scenario.”

“Traditional speeches and assurances won’t help neither will they work,” he observed, “steps need to be taken to remove AFSPA from across J&K and army should be withdrawn from civilian areas.”

He said that GoI has always been using ‘their Crisis Management’ team to resolve such on-going crises. “We reject policy of distortion of facts,” he said.

Referring to “clouds of war”, he said that war was not solution to any issue. “India and Pakistan need to sit and solve issues under some formula,” he said.

Responding to questions, Tarigami said, “I won’t oblige to those who are responsible for oppression (in Kashmir).”

When asked whether he would follow former PDP member and member parliament, Tariq Hamid Karra, to resign from his seat in assembly, he said, “I will continue to raise voice against excesses in and outside the house (assembly).” “He (Karra) did not ask me when he fought elections nor did he consult me when he resigned (from Parliament and PDP).”

Referring to plebiscite demand of Kashmiris, Tarigami responded in clear terms, “me and my party doesn’t stand for plebiscite.” “Do you talk about same UN (United Nations) which is under the control of NATO forces, which over saw (destruction of) Libya, Syria, Yemen and Iraq.”

“It is a human tragedy,” he added.

Notably, in the on-going 71st session of United Nations General Assembly, Pakistan demanded Right to Self Determination for Kashmiris while India maintained that J&K was its integral part. At least UN Security Council has passed 18 resolutions on Kashmir.

However, when media personnel asked him that his colleague and independent lawmaker Er Rashid demands plebiscite in Kashmir and in view of such a demand he holds protest marches towards UN office in Srinagar, Tarigami said, “it is not in his mandate.”

“We are yet to see him (MLA Langate) resigning (from assembly),” he said adding that the Langate lawmaker had announced that he will resign from assembly in protest against the atrocities in Kashmir.


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