Bow Out: Farooq Tells Kamaal

Bow Out: Farooq Tells Kamaal

10 November 2011
Greater Kashmir
Umer Maqbool

Srinagar: Amid widening gulf between coalition partners National Conference and Congress, NC president Dr Farooq Abdullah Thursday asked Dr Mustafa Kamaal to immediately step down as the Additional General Secretary and Chief Spokesman of the party. Dr Farooq, who is also a Union Minister, said he had to take this ‘difficult decision’ because Dr Mustafa Kamaal has been making certain statements “which are not in tandem with the policies of National Conference and are against the coalition dharma.” Dr Kamaal was appointed Additional General Secretary and party Spokesman by Dr Abdullah last month following the eruption of political storm over the mysterious death of a prominent NC activist Haji Yousuf on September 30 allegedly in custody. Since his appointment as NC spokesman, Dr Kamaal has been continuously dishing out “inflammatory” statements targeting everybody including New Delhi, Army, Congress, separatists and opposition PDP. Dr Abdullah said his party is committed to the National Conference–Congress coalition government and its smooth functioning and any indiscipline in this regard within the National Conference will not be tolerated. In a statement earlier, which was later withdrawn by NC, Dr Kamaal had said that Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi has no role in running the government in Jammu and Kashmir. Kamaal was reacting to state Congress chief Prof Saifuddin Soz’s remarks that Rahul Gandhi was not happy with the governance in J&K. Dr Kamaal told a local news gathering agency KNS that Rahul’s role is to run Congress party and not the J&K government. “What has Rahul’s happiness or unhappiness to do with the functioning of the state government,” he quipped. Prof Soz had on Wednesday said that even Rahul Gandhi was not happy with governance here. “He expressed his disapproval when he visited the state last month. He (Rahul) was not satisfied with what is happening here. Many young entrepreneurs talked to him during the visit and raised the issue of a kind of ‘disconnect’ between the youth of the state and the government,” Prof Soz had said when asked how the central leadership views the performance of the state government. The NC leader reacted by saying: “If Soz has any specific corruption case, he should refer it to State Accountability Commission (SAC) or State Vigilance Organisation (SVO). He is part of the government and shouldn’t level such allegations in public.” Asked to comment on Soz’s statement that coalition was a compulsion and many things were going on against the spirit of coalition, Dr Kamaal told KNS that government was working for the last three years. “Why didn’t Soz raise such issues before two years or one year? There is no sincerity in Soz’s statement,” he claimed. On apprehensions that Congress might withdraw from the coalition, he said, “If tomorrow Mamta Benarjee withdraws support to central government, what will happen. In politics anything is possible.”


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