Govt Shrinking Space Of Mainstream Politicians: Mufti

Govt Shrinking Space Of Mainstream Politicians: Mufti

17 August 2011
Rising Kashmir
Sonika Raina

Jammu: Peoples Democratic Party patron, Mufti Muhammad Sayeed Wednesday said the space for mainstream political leadership could once again shrink in the state “in view of the draconian methods adopted against peaceful dissent”. Addressing a public rally at Bawe Talab in Jammu, Mufti said the government’s “indecisiveness” to act on sensitive issues like human rights violations, corruption and unemployment has disappointed people of the state. “I am afraid people are again feeling alienated as there is no one to listen to their grievances.” The former chief minister said the government is on a spree of arresting and booking youth. “More than five thousand boys who should have been pursuing studies are made to feel like criminals and report at police stations while hundreds are in jails. “The government had abandoned governance and development, created a specter of militancy and stone pelting and was using it as an alibi to muzzle all criticism or protest.” He said the restoration of peace in the valley after the last year’s unrest was the result of people’s initiative. “And it could prove fragile in view of the draconian methods adopted against peaceful dissent.” The PDP patron praised National Democratic Alliance (NDA) and former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee for working towards restoration of peace in Jammu and Kashmir. He hailed Vajpayee for extending hand of friendship towards Pakistan. “Nobody was hopeful that there could be peace on the border in the state, but it was Vajpayee’s initiative that turned out to be a historical step.” Mufti said Karwan-e-Aman bus service that was started between India and Pakistan strengthened the relations between the two sides. He insisted that dialogue was the only solution for any problem, stressing that the same was exemplified by Vajpayee which led to decrease in militancy and increased the trade ties between the two countries. Stating that democracy is battle of ideas, he said during NDA rule Hurriyat leaders were never detained whereas the present government detains one or the other Hurriyat leader every second day. Mufti reiterated his party’s stand on self rule. He said PDP demanded a solution that was acceptable to all the three regions of the state as a whole, adding that the vision of the party has to be taken forward for the betterment of the state. “PDP wants solution of Kashmir issue within the constitutional framework of the country.” Praising the rule of PDP-Congress coalition government, the former chief minister said the administration of the government was good due to good compatibility between the two parties. He said people of Jammu were helpless at the hands of “strong political corruption”. “If Kashmir was facing Police Raj, Jammu is facing Mafia Raj.” Criticizing the National Conference government, he said the government took three years to appoint chief for the State Accountability Commission. “And after that the chief minister did not find any time to appoint both the members of the Accountability Commission.”


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