Kashmiri youth have no option than picking up the gun; says Mehbooba Mufti


Jammu, November 9: PDP president and former chief minister Mehbooba Mufti on Monday accused BJP led Central government of leaving no other option for Kashmiri youth except to pick up the gun.

Apney loggon ke pas koi rasta nahi chora hai…beech ka rasta nahi chora hai’’ (You have left no option…middle path for them), she said while talking to media persons here.“Ladka sochta hai ya to mujey jail jana hai, ya bandook uthani hai. Achha hai ke mein bandook uthayun aur mein mar jaun. Woh jada behtar hai jail janey se’’ (The boy thinks that he has to either go to jail or pick up the gun. He thinks that it is better to pick up the gun and get killed than going to jail), she added.

She accused BJP government at the Centre of vitiating the atmosphere in Kashmir , saying “such has been the situation that even people like us find difficult to stay there. Militancy has risen to such a level that 10-15 youth together leave a village today, because you have scuttled all the voices, she added.

Reiterating her demand for restoration of Jammu and Kashmir’s own flag and the constitution, she “we are the people who upheld tri colour in Kashmir’’ all the times. “Today, they (BJP-RSS) while wearing “chaddi’’ give us lessons on flag…My father (late Mufti Sayeed) upheld it in Kashmir even during the time he was called gutter worm (nali ka keera) and socially boycotted,’’ PDP leader said. Without naming the RSS headquarters at Nagpur, she said “they do not hoist tri colour even today at the office their chief sits’’.

In this context, PDP leader pointed out that in Kashmir, they tell people not to talk about Article 370 else they will be detained under PSA and in Jammu, say it is anti-national. 

In Jammu also, people are getting suffocated and they are also on verge of exploding, she said referring to her meetings with cross section of people here during the past few days.  

On the contrary, BJP leaders themselves talk about Article 370 at everywhere, she said, asking “how much you will milch a cow’’. 

She accused BJP government of putting Jammu and Kashmir on sale, adding their talks of abrogating Article 370 did not have any impact during Bihar elections. “you want to snatch land from the farmer, but telling them go to Kashmir and buy land there. First provide them two time meals and a shelter, besides water and fertiliser to the farmers, she said while appreciating the Rashtriya Janata Dal Tejashwi Yadav for setting the narrative on roti, kapda, makan despite being so young.

While it was telling everybody across the country to go to Jammu and Kashmir and buy land there, it has done nothing for the return and rehabilitation of Kashmiri Pandit migrants in the Valley, she said. Pointing out that they had been waiting for a BJP government in the hope that it will rehabilitate them back in the Valley, the PDP leader said that it does not talk about them or the plans about their rehabilitation today. Except for transit accommodation constructed for them during former chief minister Mufti Sayeed’s time and some initiatives taken during the period of then prime minister Manmohan Singh, nothing has been done in the matter, she added.

She accused BJP government of putting to auction all the resources of Jammu and Kashmir including land, jobs and even minor minerals. While they had already taken our waters (river waters) and power generated there being utilised to run industry elsewhere the country, they were now allocating even the contracts for extraction of minor minerals from rivers and streams to outsiders, she said. “If you out to sale our land, jobs and even resources, where will the local people go,’’ she asked.

Justifying the demand for restoration of Article 370, she said Jammu and Kashmir had acceded with India on certain conditions and the main among them was that its people will continue to have their own special identity. This was got from the Centre by then then Maharaja Hari Singh and National Conference leader Sheikh Abdullah to ensure that people of the then state have certain safeguards in respect to their small land holdings and fewer jobs. This provision ensuring separate flag and the constitution for Jammu and Kashmir had not come from Pakistan or China, but given by the Indian Constitution. Today, by abrogating Article 370, they have not only snatched our rights from us, but have “desecrated’’ the Constitution given by Baba Sahab Ambedkar, she added.