Mehbooba Mufti: Elections would be a respite for people of J&K: Mehbooba Mufti

Former chief minister of Jammu and Kashmir, Mehbooba Mufti on Saturday said that if people of Jammu and Kashmir won’t unite to fight the disempowerment campaign of the ruling BJP government, the region would soon turn into Gaza.

Mufti accused the BJP government of snatching land, jobs, resources, minerals and water from the people of J&K, but warned that this should not push the population into helplessness and hopelessness.

“If we are hopeless and accept everything as fate, god forbid our situation would be worse than the Gaza strip…they are giving all big and small contracts to outsiders…They want to trick us into submission but we should not fall in that trap,” she said.

The People’s Democratic Party chief stated that people have to be united to fight through political, democratic and constitutional means and assured that the continuous struggle will help the people to regain their lost pride, prestige and honour. “NIA, ACB,SIA and other agencies conduct raids almost everyday here. Our businessmen are harassed. Youngsters are arrested every day and this government should give us details about it,” said Mufti, adding, “We should fight this oppression and show solidarity with our neighbour who is the target of such raids, rather than believing in their false propaganda.”

Mufti, who is also vice president of People’s Alliance for Gupkar Declaration–an amalgam of regional parties formed in October 2020 to strive for restoration of statehood and special status of J&K– said that elections at this time could bring some respite for the people of J&K. “They want us to become untouchables for each other, but we shouldn’t allow that. Political parties despite differences have joined hands and people have to be united as well,” she said.

The former chief minister also urged youngsters not to join the militants ranks and save themselves for future democratic struggles. “Recently they arrested Showkat Ahmad Sheikh from Shopian in connection with a blast in a SUMO vehicle. Ten days later they claimed that he was a militant killed in an encounter in Kupwara–around 150 kms from Shopian…In these chance encounters civilians are killed and their dead body is not given back,” she alleged. Mufti said that the administration is also attacking the education sector here by banning Falah e Aam schools, where modern education is imparted on very less fees. “They are not imparting training of weapons or trishuls in these schools. They have just put lakhs of students and thousands of teachers in lurch,” she said.

On the issue of continued protests of Kashmiri Pandits, Mufti said that the BJP government is using this community to defame people of Kashmir. “Moulvis should also tell people in masjids that Kashmiri Pandits are our assets. BJP uses Kashmiri Pandits to defame us,” she said.

The PDP chief said that the administration has created such an environment ahead of Amarnath Yatra as if some aggressor is coming here. “They are pilgrims and our guests and we have been hosting them for centuries. They have erected bunkers everywhere as if they are coming here for the first time,” she said.

On the latest Agnipath scheme, Mufti said that this policy is not honourable for the army men. “It is against the ethos of pride and sacrifice of the Indian Army. This was Savarkar’s idea to train RSS members so that they can be more brutal in their dealing with minorities,” she said. On the recent political crisis in Maharashtra, Mufti accused the BJP of running the most corrupt system in the history of independent India.

“BJP has made a mess of this country. Democracy and secularism are fundamentals of India, but BJP is turning everything upside down. Theirs is the most corrupt system I have ever seen. Be it Rajasthan, MP, Goa and now in Maharashtra, they are buying MLAs for several hundred crores,”said Mufti.

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