Srinagar: National Conference President Dr Farooq Abdullah on Friday cautioned New Delhi against an effort to suppress the political aspirations of the people of Jammu and Kashmir through administrative and military mechanisms. Addressing party leaders, legislators and workers at a function held in Srinagar to commemorate the second death anniversary of Veteran Party Leader and Former General Secretary Advocate Sheikh Nazir Ahmed, Dr. Farooq Abdullah said statesmanship and sagacity demanded that New Delhi should initiate political engagement with the alienated youth of the State rather than resorting to a confrontational and aggressive approach by issuing threats of ‘harsh measures’.
“When we demand that New Delhi should engage with the politically isolated, alienated and anguished youth of the State, we are not condoning violence or turmoil – nor are we supporting strife. To the contrary, by asking New Delhi to talk to these young men, we are seeking that the root cause of alienation be addressed rather than a continuing with the policy of treating the symptoms through operational and administrative mechanisms. That is a tried, tested and failed approach and has yielded nothing but a loss of young lives on all sides”, Dr. Farooq Abdullah said while addressing the party function at National Conference Head Office in Srinagar.
The National Conference President said the turmoil and hostility in Jammu and Kashmir was in itself a result of extra-constitutional intrigues by successive regimes in New Delhi that went against all constitutional safeguards and promises that were provided to the State at the time of accession. “Before looking at external factors and blaming the problems in J&K on terrorism, New Delhi should read contemporary history of the State with objectivity and then only will it realize that the simmering political issue in the State is the outcome of New Delhi’s overt and covert acts of constitutional impropriety and injustice with the State and its people”, the National Conference President added.
“These young men we see out on the roads today don’t care about their lives, their livelihood or about their personal grievances but are full of resentment and hostility because of how New Delhi has always and continues to see and define them through the narrow, conventional prism of law and order dynamics. If it were as simple as threatening the youth to desist from these protests and activities, the soil of this State wouldn’t have been soaked with the blood of thousands of young men and women. This too is no rocket science”, Dr. Farooq Abdullah further said.
The National Conference President, while paying glowing tributes to Veteran Party Leader and Former General Secretary Sheikh Nazir Ahmed, asked the party leaders, functionaries, legislators and workers to work hard and in a selfless manner to ensure the success of the party in the upcoming Parliament and Panchayat Elections. “At the appropriate time the party will decide on the candidates and strategy for the Parliament By-polls for Srinagar and Anantnag. As far as the Panchayat Elections are concerned, it is your duty to seek honest, efficient and hard-working individuals as candidates to become Panchs – so that the third tier of democracy can be strengthened and made accountable to the last man in the farthest of our villages”, Dr. Farooq Abdullah added.