Mehbooba turns the pages of J&K history, asks Kashmir solution by talks with Pakistan


SRINAGAR: Former J&K Chief Minister and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) president, Mehbooba Mufti, has blamed National Conference (NC) for bringing National Investigation Agency (NIA) to the State and handing over seven power projects to the Centre.
Mehbooba while talking to reporters at Baramulla on the sidelines of the party rally said that it was National Conference-Congress Government led by Omar Abdullah in 2009 who brought NIA to the State. “Like POTA, NC during its tenure has brought the NIA to the State and we were against the move at that time as well,” she said.

She said that bans and sealing of properties is not solution but Jammu and Kashmir needs to be dealt politically. “The oppressive measures through NIA won’t yield any result to Kashmir issue, but a political solution is the only way out to resolve the issues. You cannot resolve the issues by imposing bans and seizing the properties but a political issue needs a political resolution only,” she said.

“When Farooq Abdullah made alliance with the BJP, they introduced POTA and gave 7 power projects but when we did, we said do not tinker with Article 370, revoke AFSPA and remove Army from civilian areas”, the PDP president said.
Mehbooba welcomed the reports of opening of Sharda Peeth by Pakistan, saying that the step will benefit Kashmiri Pandits as it was their long pending demand. “The only way to change the situation of the Valley is the PDP’s agenda.  Mufti Sayeed was of the same view that all the routes should be opened. Both sides of the Kashmir should meet”, she said.
The PDP president while addressing the party rally without naming the NC accused them of demanding in the past that Huriyat Conference leaders should be thrown into Jehlum. “When Mufti Sayeed made the party in 1999, it was clearly written in our objectives that if Kashmir dispute is to be resolved, it is necessary to begin talks with Pakistan and other stakeholders like Hurriyat. Although at that time, Kargil war just happened and every other party was of the view that Pakistan should be attacked. The other parties who are today saying that Hurriyat leaders should be included in the talks, at that time, used to say that they should be thrown into the Jehlum River”, she said.
The PDP president said that former Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed motivated PM Vajpayee for holding talks with Pakistan and Huriyat Conference. “If you remember, Mufti Sayeed persuaded then Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee to come to the Valley and then compelled him to say that we are ready to begin talks with the Pakistan. He motivated him to begin talks with various stakeholders and leaders including Yaseen Malik and Mirwaiz Umar Farooq. Muzaf-farabad route and Rawlakote route were opened, Universities were made in Awantipora and Rajouri, Colleges were made and roads were constructed. People thought something has happened and youth started laying arms slowly but unfortunately after Vajpayee and Mufti Sahib got changed, nothing was done after that. After that Mufti Sahib asked them again to give him power so that he can resolve the Kashmir dispute”, she said.
“Mufti Sayeed took the extreme step and decided to join hands with the BJP. He would have become the Chief Minister of the State irrespective of the number of seats but he asked people to give him full mandate so that he can resolve the Kashmir dispute. Unfortunately the full mandate was not given and what was given, we did our best and sacrificed our party so that the Kashmir dispute is resolved. We did not joined hands with the NDA and not made alliance there, then Baig Sahib would have been Minister in the BJP, same as Omar Abdullah was minister in the BJP”, Mehbooba said.
Senior PDP leader Muzaffar Hussain Beg while addressing the party rally said they are ready to provide legal assistance to both JeI and Yasin Malik-led JKLF in Supreme Court and the High Court. “We are ready to provide legal assistance to both the JKLF and JeI, provided they trust us,” he said.