My Govt Fell After I Refused BJP Diktats: Mehbooba

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  Mehbooba Mufti | KO File Photo

Says Her Ally Wanted Rampant PSAs, Deny Militant Bodies To Families; Crackdown On Jama’at

Srinagar: The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) president Mehbooba Mufti claimed on Tuesday that her party’s coalition government with Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) collapsed in 2018 after she refused many demands of her ally, including the denial of militants’ bodies to their families and crackdown on Jama’at-e-Islami.

Addressing her party workers and the newly elected DDC members at her party headquarters here, the former Chief Minister said that her father late Mufti Mohammad Sayeed had joined hands with the saffron party only to cage the ‘genie in a bottle’ so that Article-370 is secured. She said despite being in coalition with the BJP, she did not compromise on her party agenda and instead got two BJP ministers dropped for rallying for the culprits of minor Kathua girl.

“If we had compromised with our principles maybe the government would not have fallen. They (BJP) called me weak. They wanted me to take action against Jamaat-e-Islami; they wanted me to deny bodies of militants to their families, besides rampant use of PSA on more and more people. The government collapsed after I refused to do all this,” she said.

During the PDP-BJP coalition government, Mehbooba said, she revoked FIRs of 12000 youth and facilitated a one month unilateral ceasefire in Jammu and Kashmir by the Modi-government at the Centre.

“We also managed to send a delegation of Indian parliamentarians at the doors of Hurriyat leaders so that talks could be initiated. Unfortunately, the doors didn’t open,” she said.

“The then Home Minister said six times that his doors are open for dialogue. But his offer got no response from the other side,” she added.

The former Chief Minister further said that her party came into existence to play a role in the final resolution of Kashmir issue between the two nuclear neighbours.

“J&K will be a bridge between India and Pakistan not a battlefield. We are not saying anything new but what Atal Bihari Vajpayee said and did. We demand the opening of our traditional routes too,” she said.

The former chief minister, who was an ally of the BJP from 2015 to 2018, said the mainstream political parties in Kashmir were working to achieve their goal of restoration of special status “within the Constitution of the country”.

“National Conference talks about autonomy, it is within the Constitution. We (PDP) talk of self-rule, open borders, reconciliation … how long can you maintain peace through the barrel of the gun?” she asked.

The PDP president said that the resolution of the Kashmir issue was a cause close to her father Mufti Mohammad Sayeed”s heart.

“Even from his death bed (in December 2015), he asked me if (Prime Minister) Modiji had gone to Lahore (Pakistan). He (Mufti) said now some way could be found for a resolution,” she said.

“We want peace, but we are not the ones to raise the white flag,” she added.

Mehbooba said her party’s struggle is not against the people of the country but the party and the government that “humiliated Jammu and Kashmir” by repealing its special status.

“PDP is going nowhere till it plays its role in restoring what has been snatched from us,” she said.

Mehbooba claimed that the formation of the People’s Alliance for Gupkar Declaration (PAGD) had led to frustration in the ruling party and referred to the recent detention of some leaders.

Coming down heavily on the BJP government, Mehbooba said that the saffron party was using the country’s top agencies as its partners including NIA, ED, CBI only “suppress people and intimidate them”.

She alleged that all the winning candidates of NC, PDP or other parties, even independents were being blackmailed, lured with money or threatened to be booked in false cases for not striking a deal with BJP’s proxy party.

“The government is shouting that democracy has been restored in Jammu and Kashmir. However, the fact is that they have made a joke of democracy after the poll results came out. An Adda has been created and unfortunately some police officers are also involved in it,” she said.

“A person who was caught along with three guns in his car was let go and his case was withdrawn as he became BJP’s proxy. On the contrary PDP youth leader Waheed Para, who made hundreds of youth join PDP was put behind the bars by NIA,” she added.

She expressed disappointment that despite court orders, Para wasn’t allowed to take oath in jail. (With KNO inputs)

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