Mufti urges PM to accept Zardari's invite
Calling upon the people of Jammu and Kashmir to support Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in order to get relief from 'present oppressive regime', party patron and former Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed on Monday said that it was unfortunate that dialogue process between India and Pakistan has been reduced to 'cosmetic photo sessions' without concluding any concrete decisions.
Mufti said that though people of J and K do not expect any major breakthrough in the upcoming meeting of the heads of the two countries but the process of dialogue which has 'unfortunately got stalled' must start somewhere.
"We want them (India and Pakistan) to take J and K specific confidence building measures in the upcoming meet between Foreign Ministers' S M Krishna and Hina Rabbani Khar," Mufti demanded.
Addressing a mammoth gathering of PDP workers on the 13th Foundation day anniversary at TRC ground in Srinagar, Mufti said J and K can not be denied its right to decide its own destiny through democratic methods.
Mufti said Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari's invite to Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to visit that country on Guru Nanak Dev Ji's birth anniversary reflects change of attitude in Pakistan establishment including army and 'our country should respond to this transformation'.
Urging New Delhi to change its political attitude towards Jammu and Kashmir and calling upon Manmohan Singh to accept the invitation of Zardari to visit Pakistan, Mufti said unless internal and external dimensions of J and K are addressed effectively 'the sore will continue to fester'.
Mufti cautioned New Delhi against its 'over bearing attitude' towards J and K saying that it must have again witnessed the result of 2008 election manipulations.
"First they subverted the democratic process in 1987 and then in 2008 through tactical rigging. The results are obvious. The present dispensation in J and K has lost its legitimacy," he observed.
The PDP patron said that the establishment in Delhi has not been comfortable with strong representative voices from J and K and it has 'historically promoted hand picked yes-men who can carry out orders of establishment'.
"It is time that the people of the state realize the power of vote which alone can change our destiny and enable us to fight the hegemonic mindset," Mufti observed.
He said while strong regional parties have emerged throughout the country giving it true democratic and federal structure, leaders like Mamta Banerjee, J Jayalalithaa or Akhilesh Yadav are not allowed to emerge out in J and K.
While referring to dismal functioning of the present dispensation in J and K, Mufti said that Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) has been made a mere slogan by the present government but on ground it has even failed to take action against its own policemen involved in 2010 killings.
"Have this government concluded any inquiry in a single case of 120 innocent civilian killings that took place in 2010. The National Conference surrendered all the power projects to NHPC and the biggest treachery with the people of J and K was when it surrendered the sovereignty of J and K Bank to RBI," Mufti said.
"This government has missed the deadline of municipal elections which were otherwise scheduled to be held in 2010. The Panchayats have been virtually rendered defunct.
"For the last four years there has been no purposeful district development board meeting and planning process has been rendered to selective distribution of funds. The entire system of governance is defunct," Mufti remarked.
He urged the Singh not to make the present position of trade and people to people contact across LoC static.
He said there was a dire need of strong impetus in this direction.
The PDP patron urged his party members to create a better awareness about its agenda by reaching out to people in every corner of the state.
On this occasion, PDP president Mehbooba Mufti said that it was expected from this government to open new avenues for youth of the state but instead the youth have been made a focused victim of inefficiency, corruption and police repression.
She said everything in J and K is on sale whether it is jobs, contracts or transfers. "The corruption industry is growing by leaps and bounds."
Mehbooba said the present government has failed to fulfill the commitment of Chief Minister Omar Abdullah which he made on the floor of legislative assembly that all FIRs against youth would be withdrawn.
Instead, she said, more youth have been arrested and false and fabricated cases registered against teenagers.
She warned the government that PDP could not wait indefinitely for these FIRs to be withdrawn.
Mehbooba said the people of J and K could not be denied their democratic right for too long.
"I call upon leaders in New Delhi to learn to trust the people of J and K. They are the best security for the state and the country. The laws like AFSPA which took another youth Hilal Ahmad Dar in Bandipore have to go and security forces which have performed their duties of restoring peace have to be relieved from civilian areas," Mehbooba said.
Significantly, the function was attended by Kashmiri Pandits affiliated with PDP who had come from across the state.
All the MLAs, MLCs, District Presidents and other office bearers of the party were present on the occasion.
About 15000 people participated in the rally.