Muslim Federation Jammu opposes trifurcation, favours secular front to remove discrimination
7 September 2001
The Daily Excelsior
JAMMU: Accusing National Conference Government of adopting discriminatory attitude towards Jammu region, the Muslim Federation Jammu today stressed on need of formulating a non-political secular front to launch agitation against discriminatory policies of State Government. Addressing a press conference, president of the Muslim Federation Jammu, Abdul Majid Khan out-rightly rejected demand of trifurcation raised by some groups. ''The demand of separate Jammu statehood is based on two nation theory'', he said and appealed to the Jammu people to come together for forging a secular front to fight against discrimination with the Jammu region. He admitted that successive State Governments have meted out a step motherly treatment with Jammu region but he was of the view that trifurcation was no solution of discrimination. Mr Khan said that trifurcation demand has been creating mis-understanding among different sections of society. He stressed on the need formulating a non-political secular front to fulfill aspirations of all sections of society of Jammu region. Coming down heavily on ruling National Conference for discriminating with Jammu Muslims, Mr Khan said, ''Jammu Muslims are ignored deliberately in Government employment and professional courses so as to keep them backward, since 1996 the N C Government employed more than 50,000 employees where as the percentage of Muslims of Jammu, Kathua and Udhampur is zero percent'', he said, regretted that Muslim dominated areas of Jammu region have been lacking basic amenities like water-supply and power supply. ''There is a growing discontent and disappointment amongst the educated Muslims of Jammu, Kathua and Udhampur on account high percentage of un-employment which needs to be checked immediately by the State and the Centre'', he said. Taking strong exception of the utterances of some political parties and individuals who raise bogey of demographic change of Jammu with a view to launch a mis-information campaign for their vested interests, Mr Khan said that plea of demography change was baseless and fraught with communal tone over which has to be opposed by all secular forces of the State. ''On account of militancy some people have settled in Jammu who are the state subject and who under the state constitution can settle any where in the state'', he said, adding, ''it is unfortunate that the supporters of scrapping Art 370 pleads for settlement of the non-state subjects in the state on the one hand and opposes the settlement of militancy affected people in Jammu purely on communal consideration''. Mr Khan claimed that there was no such area in Jammu where pre-dominantly Muslims are settling. ''In all the nearby colonies there is a mixed population of Kashmiri Pandits, Sikhs, local Hindus, local Muslims, Muslims from Poonch, Rajouri, Doda and Kashmir Valley who on account of militancy have settled in Jammu and who are contributing to the economy of Jammu'', he said. Muslim Federation appealed to the people of Jammu region not to fell prey to such baseless and false propaganda which is in-leased for political gains. Demanding withdrawal of extension of Disturbed Area Act in Jammu region, Muslim Federation aired apprehension that implementation of this act will affect economy of the state in general and Jammu region in particular. ''The past experience in the districts where the Act is extended has shown that this Act has remained an utter failure in checking violence. It is bound to adversely affect the inflow of Yatries and other visitors in Jammu region'', he said. Expressing grave concern over increasing militancy incidents in Jammu region, Mr Khan appealed to the people of Jammu to remain united and maintain age, old communal harmony in the region. ''There is a possibility of the exploitation of common masses by the politicians keeping in view of coming election in the State'', he said and cautioned the people against nefarious designs of those forces which are hell bent to divide people on communal lines for their petty political gains.