SRINAGAR: Former Chief Minister of PDP-BJP coalition in erstwhile Jammu and Kashmir State, Mehbooba Mufti, on Tuesday said that the Kashmir issue was not about roads and development but a “far bigger issue”.
“Jammu and Kashmir issue is not about roads and lanes but a far bigger issue. When there is peace, roads and lanes would be laid automatically. They can be even made by DDC members elected recently,” she said addressing party workers in Anantnag district of south Kashmir.
“People of Jammu and Kashmir have been living through uneasiness and anxiety for the last 70 years. Thousands of people have been sacrificed whether a militant, a surrendered militant, a common man, a policeman or a security forces personnel,” Mehbooba said as per news agency GNS, adding, “There are ten lakh soldiers and their presence signifies that a Kashmiri has an issue which needs resolution.”
She said that “whatever India has taken away should be returned back with interest.”
“Why are you getting angry? If I do not ask you, should I ask Pakistan? We are asking for a return from the Parliament which snatched our respect and pride. Snatched our identity,” she said, adding, “People of Kashmir have been fighting for the last 70 years irrespective of the methodology adopted.”
She urged people to advise their children not to take up arms. “Please ask my children not to wield gun because violence is not the solution to any problem.”
Referring to farmers protest, she said that none of them carries a gun or stone in their hand. “Today you can see that the world is advocating their cause. Why they do not advocate our cause? It is because we have been bracketed as terrorists so as to delegitimise our aspirations and our struggle,” she said, adding, “What does gun brings? Our minors get killed. See Athar Mushtaq of Below Rajpora Pulwama, I think he had just passed 10th and entered 11th standard, and he died at (Lawaypora) HMT. His father seeks body. He called me that his son is buried in Sonamarg and urged me to get permission so that he could properly lay him in the grave there now. This is the limit of injustice. Should we talk about it or remain silent?”