KATHUA NOV 26: National Conference President Dr Farooq Abdullah on Sunday expressed grave concern over the alleged worsening security situation in Jammu and Kashmir, saying the claims of peace are falling flat on the face of step up in killings.
“Yet another Jawan has been abducted and killed”, Dr Farooq Abdullah said while talking to reporters at the side-lines of a social function here this afternoon.
Flanked by Provincial President Devender Singh Rana, the National Conference President attributed the grim security scenario to infiltration of militants from across the border and said the Centre will have to frame up its response vis a vis Pakistan for larger interest of peace in the region. “All the problems are originating from across the border and the life of border dwellers is pitiable due to intermittent shelling”, he said, adding that the nation should be taken into confidence as to how the Centre is sorting out issues with the neighbouring country.
To a question about his statement over Pakistan occupied Kashmir, Dr Abdullah reiterated this was the only realistic solution to herald a new era of peace and trust in the region. He said conversion of Line of Control into line of peace will improve the conditions of people on both the sides and promote people to people exchange that will generate a lot of goodwill.
On the appointment of Special Representative, he quipped as to what had happened to the reports formulated by the earlier interlocutors including the present Governor of the State. He said meetings of interlocutor with people are just a formality and the peace will emerge only when sincere and serious efforts are made. He recalled the endeavours having been made in this regard, including during the tenure of President Parvez Musharraf, who had come up with four-point formula. He said there were talks about out of box solution to the problems and added that if any forward movement had taken place in this regard, the scenario would have been quite different now.
He said the border skirmishes and violence in the state has pushed the people backwards. The border dwellers were suffering adversely due to fear psychosis and uncertainty, he maintained.
Dwelling upon the overall situation, Dr Farooq Abdullah lamented that the present dispensation has failed on deliverance front. The scale of rations has been reduced and food-grains were scarce on ration depots. He said the prices were touching skies and essentials like LPG becoming out of reach of the poor. He said salaries of various categories of employees were being delayed.
Referring to the developmental inertia, Dr Abdullah sought answers to the utilization of the claimed whopping funding from the Centre.
To a question on BJP surrendering before the senior coalition partner PDP, Dr Abdullah replied that even its elected representatives and ministers were being ignored by the Chief Minister. He said the coalition partners have failed the people, who were realizing futility of their mandate.
About the proposed withdrawal of cases and release of stone-pelters, the NC President said the coalition is itself uncertain about all this. At times they say the stone-pelters would be released and at times they talk about sending the juvenile to rehabilitation centres, he added.
He also spoke about the ensuing Panchayat elections and blamed the coalition government for trampling democracy by introducing indirect election of Sarpanchs. He described it against the spirit of democracy at grass roots level.
The former Chief Minister exhorted the people to gear up for democratic exercise to elect representatives for basic democratic institutions sagaciously. Care should be taken to ensure elections of public spirited and honest representatives. He also hoped women to benefit from 33 per cent reservation in Panchayats.
Dr Farooq Abdullah cautioned against the machinations of dividing the society on religious lines. He said these tendencies were detrimental to the unity of the country and decried myopic politics being played on this sensitive issue.
On this occasion Col (Retd) Rashid Choudhary joined the National Conference.
Earlier, the NC President conferred with senior party workers and functionaries. Besides Provincial President Devender Singh Rana, present on the occasion included State Vice President Kashmira Singh, former legislators Dhain Chand and Sagar Chand, District President National Conference Kathua Ajit Kumar, Davinder Singh Bindu, J. P Singh, Ravinder Singh Salathia, Harpreet Singh Sethi, Neelam Sharma, Rakesh Kumar Raju, Davinder Mehta, Harjeet Singh Isher, Ishfaq Chouhan, Parveen Koser, Sham Narain Mehta and Suresh Kumar.