NC shelved autonomy for ministerial berth in NDA government
Srinagar : Peoples Democratic party (PDP) president, Mehbooba Mufti Monday said the PDP during its brief tenure in the government delivered more than even the Common Minimum Programme (CMP) it had struck with its alliance partner Congress.
Addressing a well-attended party workers meet of Shopian district, she said the National Conference on the other hand brought only disaster and sell-out of the state’s interests and resources through repeated tie-ups with Congress and BJP. Maintaining that during the last 65 years change in government had only once brought about a change in atmosphere on the ground and made a difference in the lives of people and it was 2002.
To the contrary NC only strengthened the instruments of repression to silence the opposition, rig elections and deny people their fundamental rights, whether they ruled the state independently or in coalition with BJP or Congress. Mehbooba said PDP made history during its alliance with Congress by carrying along even the NDA govt in Delhi to script a new agenda of peace and reconciliation in India and Pakistan.
“Kashmir, which used to determine the defense budget of two countries suddenly set the agenda for peace with change in leadership in the state,” she said adding that first important steps were taken in lifting the siege around J&K by opening the cross-LoC routes. She said since power was not the only consideration for PDP, it in spite of having just 16 members in the assembly insisted on having a CMP with Congress.
Every point, she said, was debated and it took about a month and a brief spell of governor’s rule to finally come up with a programme that emphasized on improvement of relationship between India and Pakistan, resolution of Kashmir, revocation of POTA, disbanding of SOG and disciplining of rouge elements like Ikhwanis, apart from development agenda.
Mehbooba said even the Wazir Commission, the implementation of which was made part of CMP, was implemented with major amendments which resulted in establishment of four districts in Kashmir and Jammu each, including Shopian.
The PDP president said NC used its mandate to secure power at the state and central level and for that rest it made huge compromises at the cost of the interests of state and its people. “It is time that NC tells the people what its CMP with BJP was, or what it is now when, when it is in alliance with Congress,” Mehbooba said.
She said people know that even NC had received a record 60 members in the assembly it joined NDA only to get a junior minister’s berth to Omar Abdullah and in the process sacrificed the autonomy resolution passed by the assembly. It gave up seven most feasible power projects to NHPC, banned Shahtoos on the orders of Menaka Gandhi, agreed to stop the construction of North –South corridor at Lakhanpur, banned opening and upgradation of new schools, brought POTA to the state and extended AFSPA to Jammu province as well.
Now that the NC is in alliance with Congress again without a CMP, Mehbooba said the only achievement it can boast of is securing minister’s salary and perks for Farooq Abdullah, even without a respectable portfolio. Mehbooba said NC had sensed that its days of deceit are over and that people have seen through its tricks which would become clear in the Lok Sabah elections itself.
In order to divert attention from its own unholy alliances and opportunistic coalitions one of which in 1987 set the state on path of destruction, it is spreading baseless rumors ours about PDP which it sees its only potential threat to its rule.
Others who were also present on the occasion included senior PDP leader, Abdul Razzaq Zawoora, MLA; Zaffar Iqbal Manhas, state secretary; Mohammad Shafi Banday, district Shopian; Advocate Yousuf, party leader; Ataullah Simnani, party leader; Waheed-ur-Rehman Parra, youth wing in charge, and youth leaders, Raja Waheed, Yawar Shafi, Mohsin and Muzzafar Jan.