Oppn Boycotts CM's Meet On Smart Cities

Srinagar: Opposition National Conference legislators Thursday boycotted the "smart city challenge" meeting convened by Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti here, terming it as a "gimmick".

National Conference legislators Ali Mohammad Sagar, Mubarak Gul, Aga Syed Ruhullah Mehdi, Shameema Firdous and Sheikh Ishfaq Jabbar boycotted the meeting which was held at SKICC with the Chief Minister in the chair, a statement issued by the party said.

"The Chief Minister should acknowledge the gravity of the situation in Kashmir and stop persecuting and repressing people while living in a fool's paradise thinking that such gimmicks will divert the focus from her utter and complete failure," the legislators said in a joint statement.

"There is absolutely no clarity on the Smart City prospects for Srinagar and seminars and presentations cannot absolve the PDP-BJP government of their responsibility to actually deliver on their promises including the broken promise of getting both Srinagar and Jammu included in the Smart Cities list," they said.

The NC Legislators asked Mehbooba to "apologize" to the people of the state for her "insensitive remarks and insults" while young boys and girls were losing their lives.

"Seminars and presentations by private consultants on smart city challenge cannot wash the blood from the hands of the Chief Minister. Srinagar is a city that has been shut down for more than 100 days now and for her to discuss smart city prospects for a bruised, weeping and mourning city is pathetic and proves that she is disconnected and utterly insensitive," the NC legislators said.

The NC legislators said Mehbooba had remained silent when Kashmir was robbed of an IIT and IIM and was similarly clueless about the smart city prospects for the city.

"Mehbooba did not utter a single word when Kashmir was deprived of vital educational institutions but wants to deflect responsibility through meaningless meetings and charades.

"Doesn't a smart city need vital education institutions? For Mehbooba Mufti to think that people can be fooled by such meetings is tragic and amusing," the NC legislators said.

Contending that they support every initiative of development, growth and modernization of infrastructure and institutions, the opposition MLAs said, "Sadly the PDP-BJP government broke every single promise made in their 'Agenda of the Alliance' including that of ensuring that Srinagar is awarded the smart city classification."

They said the Chief Minister "should accept her failures and acknowledge that she lied to the people of the state. Any other gimmicks will be futile.

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