National Conference President and Member of Parliament Dr. Farooq Abdullah on Sunday said that the secular fabric of the country was being eroded by repeated and unabated incidents of violence against minorities in different parts of the country.
Addressing a minorities’ rally at Tumkur, Karnataka, Dr. Farooq Abdullah said barbaric and horrific attacks on individuals in various parts of the country indicated a patronage to a communal and disruptive mindset that threatened to harm the very ideals of the Constitution and the Democratic Republic.
Former Prime Minister H. D. Deve Gowda also addressed the rally and said his government at the Centre was keen on restoring the Autonomy of Jammu and Kashmir and had the government been in power for long, it would have taken concrete steps in this direction.
“The secular fabric of this country is under attack and repeated hair-raising incidents of barbarism have highlighted the need for minorities to unite in their efforts to protect the secular and democratic ideals of our Constitution. Minorities in the country are living under an atmosphere of fear and anxiety as various state governments and the central government has tragically failed to speak unequivocally on this issue. Decisive and exemplary punishment in such cases is missing and this is encouraging communal elements in their nefarious designs”, Dr. Farooq Abdullah said while addressing the rally in Tumkur, Karnataka along with former Prime Minister H. D. Deve Gowda.
Speaking on the occasion, Deve Gowda highlighted the need to protect the rights and honour of the minorities and said the central government was obligated to ensure all minority communities feel safe and protected in every state of the country.
Talking about the need to find a permanent solution to the political issue in Kashmir, the Former Prime Minister said his government at the centre was keen on restoring Autonomy to Jammu and Kashmir and that it was important to take concrete measures in this direction. The Former Prime Minister said it was imperative to win the hearts and minds of the people of Jammu and Kashmir with an aim to sustaining peace and harmony in the region.
Dr. Farooq Abdullah thanked the Former Prime Minister for his support and empathy for the people of Jammu and Kashmir and said stakeholders at the national level and all across the country should unite and evolve a consensus to resolve the Kashmir issue as per the aspirations and sentiments of the people of the state.
“It is important to address the political sentiment in Jammu and Kashmir and in that direction a political consensus at the national level is crucial. New Delhi cannot avoid talking to Pakistan to resolve the Kashmir Issue and should also talk to all shades of opinion within the state with sincerity of purpose and utmost seriousness. I thank Former Prime Minister Shri Deve Gowda for his support and hope his voice of reason is followed by other stakeholders across the country”, Dr. Farooq Abdullah said in his address.