Do Not Tinker With Our Identity, Mehbooba Tells PM With Folded Hands

SRINAGAR: In a quick presser at her residence, PDP president Mehbooba Mufti said that tinkering with the special status of Jammu and Kashmir will be a betrayal with the commitments that India’s fore-fathers made with the people of Jammu and Kashmir. She said it will have disastrous consequences.

Former chief minister Mehbooba Mufti addressing a presser at her Gupkar residence in Srinaagr on August 2, 2019.

“The people from Jammu and Kashmir living in India including students are frightened because of the situation that prevails in Kashmir,” Mehbooba said. “In my life, I have never seen sight fear and panic that I am witnessing right now.”

Asking that if the Government of India was saying that the situation in the state has improved, why additional deployments are being made in Kashmir? She said the situation indicates a sort of psychological war. “Why are tourists and pilgrims being sent home,” she asked. “Governor Sahab is saying there is nothing but the situation is really bad.”

“There are rumours that the Government is going to tinker with the special status and the Article 35A,” Mehbooba said. “Folding hands is not permitted in Islam but I am requesting my countrymen and the Prime Minister that please do not tinker with Article 35A. It is the only Muslim majority state that rejected the two-nation theory and joined a democratic and secular India on the basis of the guarantees. Today, she said, there are efforts to do away with these assurances and guarantees.

“You have taken tourists and pilgrims out but where will the people of Kashmir, Jammu and Ladakh go,” she asked. “You have created a situation suggesting that it is an issue of territory. The fact is that territory is already with you. You have lakhs of the army here. “

Ms Mufti said that the people have given immense sacrifices for the issue of identity. “There is no village where we do not have graveyards, regardless of who killed them. We have orphans and we have widow,” she said. “Now you are attacking that identity. I am not threatening but I am telling you it will have consequences.”

From Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah to Mufti Mohammad Sayeed, everybody has been saying that whatever Kashmir will get from India, she said. “If you are tinkering with the guarantees it will betray the trust that people had in the assurances of the country’s forefathers.” She said her father joined hands with BJP just for that and believed in JumhooriyatInsaniyat and Kashmiryat.

Ms Mufti appealed the people of Jammu and Ladakh that they must join the identity battle which she said is about survival. “I do not want to see the days when somebody will come and ask where are Kashmiris, where are Ladakhis and where are Dogras,” she said. “I want to tell you that we do not have any regional battle. It is a survival issue.”

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