by Saima Bhat
SRINAGAR: Breaking up his silence for the first time after BJPDP breakup, PDP’s senior member and former Deputy Chief Minister Muzaffar Hussain Beigh hinted at forming and joining the third front in Kashmir with Sajad Lone. The statement came at a time when the Sajjad Lone, the Peoples’ Conference (PC) president is striving hard to form the government in Jammu and Kashmir.
Addressing a press conference at his Srinagar house on Tuesday afternoon, Beigh while speaking his “heart out” said he has not decided to resign from his party, the PDP until he gets an answer from the party to his queries but said there is a possibility of forming a grand alliance. “I will seriously consider of joining the third front,” Beigh said. “Peoples Conference is like home to me and Sajad Lone is like a son. If Sajad is interested in the third front, he should be encouraged.”
Beigh said that a year back PDP formed a committee to amend the constitution of PPD of which he was the chairman and they had submitted a report to party president Mehbooba Mufti. “Meeting was supposed to be called but that never happened. Now I will decide my future only after I get a response from the party about the statements I made today. If PDP doesn’t take a note then I’ll change my party.”
Beigh also said that he decided to speak because some developments have taken place so he decided to speak his mind. He asked the main two political parties, National Conference and PDP to clear their stand on Article 35A. “The logic to boycott election was baseless. Why did they boycott it when the decision on this Article has to be taken by the Supreme Court of India and sometimes cases take a long time. Maybe this takes more than five years, does that means NC will boycott assembly elections?”
In the presser Beigh also accused PDP of following NC in the boycott of the municipal and Panchayat elections. “Development on grassroots is possible only if decisions are taken at grass root level. NC takes a defensive route but NC attracts PDP in such decisions,” Beigh said. “I m sorry to say both NC, PDP don’t have the courage to take one line,” he said.
While recalling the days of the formation of PDP with late Mufti Sayeed in Kashmir, Beigh said they had founded it to fight for political space. PDP was formed to do away with the family rule. He also mentioned one of the interviews of Muhammad Yasin Malik, JKLF chairman, which was published in India Today where he had said, “He will get weapons from Pakistan and will fight.”
Beigh also accused PDP of taking a decision without consulting him when he was just a phone call away. He said his party offended MLAs as well as MLCs. “PDP backstabbed both workers as well as leaders,” he insisted. “Our politicians are responsible for killings by playing with the fence. No matter who gets killed, it is their families who suffer.”
Beigh was all praises for Sheikh Muhammad Abdullah and while mentioning his work he said, “People like Sheikh Abdullah are not born every day. Both the parties should have learnt lessons from Sheikh Sahib.”
He also accused his party of forming the alliance with BJP when there was no coherence among the ministers. “Initially I was consulted only for a day when they did alliance with BJP. Unless there is a meeting of minds, this alliance won’t work, I told this to Mehbooba. But we failed to form an alliance with BJP. There was no coordination meeting at all.” He added, “Funds remained unutilised or not received from central government.”
Beigh while playing his card of the unemployed youth in Kashmir, said, “My heart goes for all those PhD people who are unemployed. I am not anti-youth. Kashmiri and Jammuites are intelligent but now have lost faith in the system. They have even lost the faith with Hurriyat leadership as well and that’s the reason they are taking extreme steps.”
He also spoke about the two neighbouring countries, India and Pakistan. He said both are committed to resolving the Kashmir issue through Shimla agreement. “But because of militancy both in Pakistan and here, Pakistan doesn’t have the courage to have a dialogue with India. It is in the interest of both countries to resolve the Kashmir issue.”