NEW DELHI: Jammu and Kashmir witnessed the lowest number of voters in its history at the polling stations. Only 2 percent people turned up for voting in Srinagar because of unprecedented violence which happened last Sunday. The first by-poll day witnessed just 7 people who turned up for voting. 8 people died while around 100 security personnel got injured.
However, this is what Dr. Farooq Abdullah has to say, “In 2010, BJP senior leader LK Advani had said the stone throwers were former Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed’s creation. So I am not the only one saying this. Not all stone throwers are government people, they have grievances. But some of them have been funded by the government.”
After hearing about Abdullah’s statement, Syed Ata Hasnain said, “I know why Dr. Abdullah has made this statement at this juncture (election season). He may change his mind later. Street protests in Kashmir have reached a level of professional management. Separatists’ reach, organization, and infrastructure are at the tehsil level. This arrangement is at some level even better than that of the security forces.”
Hardeep Puri stated, “The government needs to reach out to these people to save them from falling into the hands of the neighbouring country which foments this kind of discontent in order to keep you on the edge all the time.”
Dr. Abdullah criticized the PDP of disappointing Kashmiris. He added, “People of the valley are terribly hurt. The PDP campaigned to keep BJP out. People now say they have been betrayed.”
Shashi Tharoor accused the BJP-PDP coalition of not involving with Kashmiris. He stated, “The BJP-PDP government has missed the opportunity. They have no credibility left for talks to take place.
“There is now complete disillusionment with the BJP-PDP government in Jammu and Kashmir,” he added.
PDP Leader Vikramaditya Singh replied, “I agree what Mufti Mohammad Sayeed had said the PDP-BJP coalition was impossible. But to form the government at that time, when Jammu had voted for the BJP, Kashmir chose PDP, we had to take this step. How could we have excluded either one of them?”
Mr. Singh attacked the center for not engaging in the state affairs. He stated, “The current situation in Kashmir is the result of center’s failure to hold effective dialogue with all stakeholders in Kashmir.
“Starting from the Gajendragadkar Committee in 1967 to reports of all party delegation, none of this has been tabled in the parliament. We still have four years to go. We have always believed that talks must go on with all stakeholders at all times. Sometimes it appears difficult. You can also have back channel talks and not everything has to be in the public domain,” he included.