Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) patron, Mufti Mohammad Sayeed Monday said while there can be different approaches to address the resolution of Jammu & Kashmir issue but it would not disappear either from the minds of people or the political agenda unless it is actually resolved.
Addressing a special meeting of senior party leaders, legislatures, district and zonal presidents and prominent workers, he said the atrocities like the killing of innocent people in Gool result from the culture of impunity prevailing in the state. The meeting was convened to take the stock of the political crisis, breakdown of law and order and general deterioration in the situation in the state, as reflected in the widespread and unprecedented outrage at the Gool killings.
“While we feel the resolution could come by adopting constitutional means and exercise of vote those who have other solutions should be free to propagate in a free atmosphere which is essence of democracy. People may be thrown into jail or house arrested but ideas cannot be imprisoned and must be addressed through engagement” Mufti said.
Reiterating the party’s demand for revocation of AFSPA and draconian laws like PSA, Mufti said it is not a mere slogan, but a primary requisite for creating a congenial atmosphere for the resolution of the larger problem. He said such laws are anti thesis of the democratic political system that is prevailing in the country. Jammu & Kashmir, he said, can’t be eternally ruled through brute force, bullets and muzzling of dissent. “Peaceful protests is a universal right, but in our state it invariably evokes brutal response from the state which has squeezed the space for political dissent and right to expression resulting in the hatred and anger against the entire system”, Mufti added.
Demanding time bound enquiry into the Gool and the Sonawari killings, Mufti said punishment to guilty in these cases could serve as the first step in the restoration of confidence in the system. Otherwise, people are bound to dismiss the promise of action as a mere continuation of the long string of fake enquires into incidents like Pathribal, Machil and the hundreds of youth killed during peaceful street demonstrations in the recent past. While condemning the indiscriminate arrests of youth in the aftermath of every atrocity committed by the government like Shopian scandal, 2010 unrest, Afzal Guroo’s hanging and now Gool, he said youth have become a soft target for the government.
Mufti said while the state needs a good and just administration too but of political problem had to be addressed for achieving lasting peace. PDP during its brief time in the government created a conducive environment where even India and Pakistan came close together to find a way forward in this regard, but the momentum could not survive subsequent events and changes.
The meeting resolved that the party would press for addressing these issues more vehemently and would begin so on the July 28 which its 15th foundation day. On that day district level conventions will be organised to generate support for the resolution of J&K problem in accordance with its Self Rule vision document. The issue of accountability of police and other security forces and withdrawal of cases against the youth will also be highlighted in these meetings.