SRINAGAR National Conference (NC) president Farooq Abdullah Friday asserted the people of the state were the rightful owners of Jammu and Kashmir and no one can abridge their constitutional rights.
Addressing a public meet at Chak Dhara in Fakirgujri on the outskirts of Srinagar, the NC president said the people of Kashmir have never allowed any one to subdue them.
“In the coming times, we will keep up with this historical proclivity of ours. New Delhi has time and again betrayed people of the state by back-pedalling on the assurances it gave from time to time on restoring autonomy,” he said, adding “the people of the state are the rightful owners of Jammu and Kashmir and no one can abridge our constitutional rights”.
Referring to the order banning civilian traffic on the Srinagar-Jammu national highway for two days a week, Abdullah sought its immediate revocation.
“Never in history have the state highways been closed for civilian traffic, even during the most tumultuous times witnessed by the state. Even during the height of Kargil war, the civilian vehicular movement was never disallowed as is being done today. The order should be revoked as it will make lives of lakhs of people miserable,” he said.
Flaying prime minister Narendra Modi for “squandering” the mandate of people, the former Union minister said the forthcoming elections would decide whether the minorities, including Muslims, walk with their heads high.
“Today our nation is facing immense hazard in the form of communal strife. We are at crossroads, now it is up to us to decide if India remains secular and progressive in its outlook where in all the communities thrive and draw their sustenance affably or a country which is tangled with the clutches of communal strife and bigotry.
“The opportunity has come. We should not let it pass by us unutilized. Today on one hand there is Gandhi’s India which is all inclusive and on other hand there are forces who believe that India belongs to the adherents of only one faith,” he said.
The NC president said the election is a vote for securing “our identity and integrity”.
“Our vote will make difference both at the Centre and in the state level. The people should avail of this opportunity and send the candidates of NC to the Parliament,” he said.
“We in Jammu and Kashmir suffer immensely due to the animosity between India and Pakistan. The NC has for past 70 years been vouching for affable Indo-Pak relations. We have persistently maintained that Indo-Pak bonhomie will usher in a new era of peace and prosperity in our peace craving state.
“I believe and hope that the next government would initiate dialogue with Pakistan, because if the two countries come closer, the dividends of their friendship will be felt in our state, which always come between the line of fire between India and Pakistan,” he said.
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