Farooq Cautions Delhi On Afghan Fallout

JAMMU: Union Minister Farooq Abdullah today cautioned New Delhi about lowering guard in the state as he fears Taliban may turn towards Kashmir following US withdrawal from Afghanistan.

India has to be ‘extremely cautiousÂ’ after the withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan  as "terrorist outfits will try to destabilise" the country, particularly Jammu and Kashmir. 

Asked whether there would be security relaxation with the abrogation of the AFSPA, Abdullah said, "No, never... Not only in J&K, but in entire India... We should not lower our guard against those forces that are trying to destabilise India." 

"We have to be very cautious. We have to be very very careful in whatever steps we take," the National Conference patron told reporters on the sidelines of a function to felicitate the state cricket team. 

Abdullah said his party was really worried about security of the country after the US troops leave Afghanistan. 

"We are worried about what is Taliban going to do, what is Al-Qaeda going to do? Because there is a feeling that the Pan-Islamism want to spread through gun and it is going to be dangerous for all of us." Referring to its impact on Jammu and Kashmir, he said, "Our region is one (which is in the focus), and we will have to be extremely cautious." 

"That is why it is important that we choose a government that can hold India together and fight the menace of terrorism and create strength," he added. 

Regarding his change in stand with regard to Narindra Modi, Farooq said, "As far as NC is concerned, NC is not going to join NDA."

"It (NC) has made its point very clear. Omar has also made it very clear that we are not going away from that (UPA). Therefore there is no question of joining Modi," Farooq said.

He further said, "it is not for Farooq Abdullah, but the people of India to decide in elections what they want - whether they want a secular government or a communal government."

Asked about Pathribal verdict  Farooq Abdullah said that Army should reopen the fake encounter case so that "the justice is served".

"The case will have to be re-opened and justice will have to be done," he said.

"Army has to relook into the case, because nobody is going to accept that the dismissal of the case is final," he said.

"I think the Centre may soon reopen the case," he said.

His son and Chief Minister Omar Abdullah on Sunday met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and raised the issue of Army's controversial decision to close the case, saying punishment should be meted to those responsible for killing of innocent people.

The Army, on January 23, had closed its probe in the case after acquitting five accused soldiers, saying the evidence recorded could not establish prima facie charges against any of them.

Asked about the way Pakistan handled the issue of arrest of its one truck driver after recovery of drugs from his vehicle, he said, "I point here that there was a driver from Pakistan side, who was carrying drugs. Obviously he has to face the law of the land."

PaK authorities had suspended both trade and travel on Srinagar-Muzaffarabad route on Jan 17 after the arrest of the Pakistani driver.

PaK officials refused to take back 48 other drivers and vehicles from that side, and also detained 27 Indian drivers and their vehicles, demanding the release of the arrested driver.

The minister said,"It is important for Pakistan to realise that this is not going to do, law will take its course. And they must release our truckers so that they can come home."

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