Chief Minister and National Conference Working President Omar Abdullah Monday said that the retrospective lectures of Narendra Modi and Mufti Mohammad Sayeed on the devastating floods were ironic since both leaders and their parties were either conspicuous in their absence or in the abandonment of their duties towards the people of Kashmir during the floods.
Addressing election rallies in Kokernag, Shangus and Dooru in South Kashmir Omar said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has ‘failed’ to do justice with the flood-affected victims of Kashmir as the Center was yet to take any call on the Rehabilitation Package which was proposed by the State Government.
On one hand we have Prime Minister accuses National Conference of not doing enough during the floods and on the other hand we have PDP Patron Mufti Mohammad Sayeed leaving no stone unturned to play politics over the miseries of the flood victims. Today, I want to answer them both together. The BJP Government in New Delhi has discriminated against the flood victims in Kashmir for political reasons and has made them suffer so that their sufferings could be exploited for political dividends in these elections. Till today the BJP Government in New Delhi has not taken a call on the Relief and Rehabilitation Package submitted by the State Government and the Prime Minister comes to Srinagar and accuses my Government of sleeping on the issue of the floods. Nothing could be more ironic. Mr. Prime Minister If my Government was sleeping then, why has your government and your political party decided to discriminate against Kashmiris so brazenly and blatantly while being awake?” Omar said.
He also questioned PDP Patron Mufti Mohamamd Sayeed’s ‘politicking’ over the floods and said that the State Government under his directions had kept a helicopter waiting for the ex Chief Minister at the Srinagar Airport to bring him into the City and consult him on the response to the tragedy. “However Mufti Sahab landed at the Srinagar Airport on one flight from Delhi and took the same flight back to Jammu without so much so bothering to take a peek at the devastating in Srinagar – let alone help by offering his services and ideas. Will the same Mufti Sahab give me sermons on how my Government should have and shouldnt have dealt with the floods? First, let Mufti Sahab – who aspires to be the Chief Minister of J&K – explain his complete absence from Kashmir during the devastating natural calamity,” the Chief Minister said.
“I have seen overwhelming response from the people of South Kashmir and am certain that PDP is set to lose almost all its existing seats from the South. The party’s MLAs are facing an enormous anti-incumbency sentiment in South Kashmir as they have utterly failed in dispensing their duties as elected representatives. PDP’s MLAs wasted six years of valuable time either in jumping on tables, in disrupting the Assembly proceedings or in being absconding from their areas. While Mufti Sahab dreams of setting his eyes on other regions of the State, he has failed to realize the enormity of the resentment against his MLAs in South Kashmir. They have all failed to deliver and have failed to perform their basic duties and most of them will not return to the Legislative Assembly. I am certain that National Conference – which has fielded clean, honest and dedicated representatives of the people as candidates from South Kashmir – will reclaim a huge chunk of seats in South Kashmir and save the entire area from the clutches of PDP’s exploitative, destructive politics,” Omar stated.
He claimed National Conference was committed to the just, fair and permanent resolution of the Kashmir Issue in accordance with the political aspirations of the people of Jammu and Kashmir. “Our stand on the Kashmir Issue has remained unchanged and is the same stand for which Sher-e-Kashmir Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah sacrificed twenty three years of his life in prison. We will not only strive for the protection of Article 370 from BJP and PDP but will also endure our ideological struggle to seek the restoration of Article 370 to its pristine, pre-1953 stand. National Conference believes the restoration of Internal Autonomy is the most acceptable, feasible and a dignified solution to the Kashmir Issue and we will never give up our political struggle for Autonomy. Unlike PDP, we don’t believe in raising seasonal political slogans only to abandon them for political expediency,” Omar said.
“Our struggle for the revocation of AFSPA will continue till the law is revoked from the State. Congress has publically admitted that while National Conference wanted the revocation of AFSPA from J&K, Congress opposed the move. We left no stone unturned while in Government to get AFSPA revoked from the State and the recent statements by ex Home Minister P Chidambaram vindicate our stand on AFSPA. I assure you that I will not rest till AFSPA is revoked from the State and will never make this a political issue. This is an issue very close to my heart and I will never abandon it for political convenience. PDP is welcome to play politics over AFSPA and thwart its revocation when it doesn’t suit them – but NC is guided by the highest principles and ethics of serving our people and upholding their dignity and we will never play politics on such issues that concern the dignity and honor of our people,” the Chief Minister added.
The election rallies were also addressed by NC candidate from Kokernag Ghulam Nabi Adgaami, from Shangus Advocate Riyaz Ahmed Khan and from Dooru, Advocate Farooq Ahmed Ganai.