Kashmir Police Should Allow 'peaceful' Anti Election Campaign, NC Leader Says

Kashmir Police Should Allow 'peaceful' Anti Election Campaign, NC Leader Says

20 March 2014
Kashmir Despatch


Srinagar: A senior National Conference leader Wednesday said Jammu and Kashmir police should allow the pro-freedom leaders to carry out 'peaceful' election boycott campaign. Additional General Secretary of ruling National Conference (NC) Mustafa Kamal, however, said that the boycott call by pro-freedom leaders in Kashmir carries no weight and people will defy their call in upcoming elections. Kamal, who is also the uncle of chief minister Omar Abdullah, said: 'In democracy, the election is a process by which government is formed. The boycott call by resistance leaders is unnecessary and useless.' He said that in the past people of Kashmir defied the boycott calls and this year it will be not different. 'See, in 2008 Assembly Elections, 2009 Parliamentary elections and in Panchayat elections, people came out and voted. The voting percentage was high despite boycott call, and this time they will come again because they are the same people,' he said, adding: 'they (resistance leaders) are calling for boycott to save their nose.' The NC leader urged police to allow resistance leader to 'peaceful anti-election campaign. 'Police should not get worried,' he said. Kamal, however, said that the resistance leaders should be only allowed to run boycott campaign 'as long as they remain peaceful'. 'It is their democratic right to run boycott campaign. But, if they resort to violence or create law and order problem, they should be dealt according to law,' he said. In a meeting held yesterday, police had reportedly formed the list of alleged 'troublemakers' which include many resistance leaders and activists ' who would be rounded up before elections in order to ensure smooth conduct of Parliamentary polls from next month. Kamal claimed that elections are the sole way to solve day-to-day problems and issues of the people. 'People should vote and elect government so that their issues would get resolved,' he said, adding: Elections won't affect Kashmir issue. 'Kashmir is political issue and it needs a political solution. Elections aren't solution of Kashmir. It is not a referendum. Those who say that election is affecting Kashmir issue are actually misleading people,' he said. The NC leader praised Mirwaiz Umar Farooq for terming election a 'non-issue', while lashed out at Syed Ali Shah Geelani and termed him a 'threat to peace'. 'Mirwaiz understands that it is a non-issue and we also say it is a non-issue,' he said, adding: 'Kashmir is an international issue and everybody knows it.' 'Geelani is a threat to peace in Kashmir. Wherever he goes, he disturbs peace and sparks violence. He is responsible for so many deaths in Kashmir and is never for peace,' Kamal said. 'Geelani has no support in Kashmir. Nobody listens to him. When he went to Sopore, he himself said that stone-pelting hurts his cause but still nobody obeyed,' the NC leader said, adding: 'empty vessels make much noise.'