Srinagar, Nov 23: Asking the Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi to get his facts correct before commenting on other parties, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) president, Mehbooba Mufti Sunday said it seems the Prime Minister has serious gaps in his knowledge on Jammu and Kashmir. Addressing various roadside meetings in Homshalibugh assembly constituency in South Kashmir’s Kulgam district, she said when Prime Minister of India speaks on serious matters one would ordinarily expect him to be correct on facts whatever his opinion on different issues.
Senior Party leader and MLA, Sofi Abdul Gaffar, who is also candidate for Homshalibugh was also present on the occasion. Mehbooba said even election time rhetoric should be restricted to decent levels and when the Prime Minister of the country speaks he should not allow it to look ridiculous as his comments about PDP in Kishtawar address sounded. She said everybody in Jammu and Kashmir and rest of country is aware about the integrity and credentials of Mufti Mohammad Sayeed and the fact that his party has introduced a much needed corrective into the democratic system of the state by offering a credible and serious regional alternative to the people.
“The three years that Mufti Mohammad Sayeed-led coalition served the state are still remembered as a reference point for good governance and political maturity which changed the scenario not just in Jammu and Kashmir but in the entire region,” the PDP Chief said.
She said in fact the former Prime Minister, Atal Bihari Vajpayee publically acknowledged the positive change that Mufti Mohammad Sayeed had brought in the atmosphere and on the ground in Jammu and Kashmir and could take his historic initiative on the state and about Pakistan only after change of government in the state. Till then, even in spite of being in alliance with NC which was having a brute majority in the state assembly Vajpayee had not been able to break ice on any front relating to Jammu and Kashmir, Mehbooba said.
Mehbooba said the Prime Minister forgot that his party was in alliance with the National Conference both at the Centre and in the state and the BJP has continued its covert relationship with that party at all crucial points especially when its legislators voted for the victory of the NC candidates, reportedly against monetary considerations. She said the If the BJP legislators sold even their vote, its leaders were in no position to sermonize on morality. Mehbooba said while NC and Congress have for most part of the post independence period ruled the state together or separately the PDP during its brief three year tenure scripted an entirely new chapter in governance and made effective interventions to bring down levels of tension and repression in the state. She said the PDP government was the the first to establish an accountability commission which the union government is still struggling to put together at the national level. Similarly, J&K established RTI in 2004 and a strong institutional system was established to check corruption which was diluted by the present coalition, she said.
“We are proud of our performance during the brief PDP tenure and that is why the people of the state living in all regions look up to us with hope and positivity,” Mehbooba said. The PDP President said the BJP is viewing PDP the as the only stumbling block to its disruptive designs for the state, that is why perhaps the Prime Minister tried to paint NC and PDP by the same brush. “While the PDP has established itself as a platform for a pluralistic and inclusive Jammu and Kashmir the BJP has been trying to polarize the situation in Jammu in its favor and divide the vote through underhand means in Kashmir and other parts of the state but the people of this state will not let them succeed in their divisive agenda,” Mehbooba asserted.
Mehbooba said though the BJP government has been paying lip service to the Vajpayee policy on Jammu and Kashmir there has so far been no evidence of any initiative in that direction. “The atmosphere of hope generated by inviting Pakistan Prime Minister, Nawaz Sharif for Modi’s inauguration was unnecessarily reversed by calling off the secretary level talks with Pakistan on flimsy grounds,” she said.
Referring to the massive devastation caused by the September deluge this year in Homshalibugh constituency, Mehbooba said the people here have suffered huge losses due to the nature’s fury and it will be the serious endeavor of the PDP to set into motion a comprehensive process of rehabilitation and reconstruction once it is voted to form the government. She said the floods have ravaged villages like Shamsipora, Hussanpora, Hassanpora, Loktipora, Aarwani, Nowpora, Wanpoh, Sangam, Kharpora, Nowpora, Wampora, Redwani, Chadder, Watalhama, Koinul, Hernag, Khadipora, Tashro, Sursam, Batangoo, Panchalpora, Uranhal, Naina , Semthan, Tulkha, Zablipora, Chanigam, Charpora, Nowbal, Gndabl, Tengbal, Kugger etc. in the constituency. She said the devastating floods have damaged standing crops, washed way orchards and infrastructure in the area.
Mehbooba said though it is a massive challenge and task to rebuild the lives, infrastructure and homes again but it will be the top most priority of the PDP to re-establish Kashmir afresh in a planned way once it is vote to form the government. She assured the people the process of rebuilding will start soon after the new government led by Mufti Mohammad Sayeed takes over the reins of the state.