Mehbooba slams Omar over ‘mistakes’

‘He Is Rubbing Salt Into The Wounds Of His Own People’

Srinagar, Dec 23: Describing the Chief Minister Omar Abdullah’s admission of ‘mistakes’ in handling the 2010 disturbance in Kashmir as “meaningless”, the opposition Peoples Democratic Party president Mehbooba Mufti Sunday said the Chief Minister “seems to have learnt no lessons from the debacle that cost more than 120 innocent people their lives.”
Addressing groups of people from different walks of life here, including ex-servicemen from the Kashmir and youth from Gurez, Mehbooba said the Chief Minister’s advice to the central government on handling the current situation that has arisen in the wake of the unfortunate gang-rape of a young woman “amounts to rubbing salt into the wounds of his own people.”
Mehbooba said the situation in 2010 was triggered by a “single unfortunate incident of police excess that resulted in the death of a young boy Tufail Matoo.” “What followed was an expression of outrage and anger as is witnessed currently throughout the country against atrocities committed on 23-year-old girl in New Delhi. But the responses to the two situations have been entirely different forcing the people to conclude that different yardsticks are applied to them which are neither judicious nor democratic,” she said.
Condemning strongly the gang-rape of the paramedic woman in Delhi, where women are feeling increasingly insecure, Mehbooba recalled how a similar incident involving two women in Shopian had been dealt with differently. She said even before an inquiry was held, the Chief Minister “declared that they had drowned in a river that hardly had any water and then managed a cover up that has become too familiar for Jammu & Kashmir.”
She said those unfortunate women were denied justice and “such insensitive responses have resulted in continued alienation of people in Jammu & Kashmir.”
Mehbooba said now that the Chief Minister has accepted his “mistakes”, “would he still not withdraw cases against thousands of young people who have been framed under serious charges.”
She said the Chief Minister had made announcements at least on three occasions, the last one on February 25 this year that the cases of stone-pelting etc. had been withdrawn but it has “turned out to be another hoax.” “The lie about withdrawal of cases has finally been nailed with the arrest of Zahida of Anantnag, a girl who lost her leg as a result of police firing and arrest on charges of stone pelting,” she said and added that “ironically it happened on the very day when the Chief Minister was sharing his wisdom with the central government on tackling the current agitation.”
Mehbooba said it looks that the coalition government in Jammu & Kashmir is “squeezing the space for expression for youth within democratic system with the objective of pushing them to extreme methods.”
She said this was evident from the recent revelation that the boy from Sopore who was killed in an encounter “had been forced to pick up gun as a result of his torture in the wake of 2010 agitation, even though he was not involved in any crime and was pursuing his studies.”

Lastupdate on : Sun, 23 Dec 2012 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Sun, 23 Dec 2012 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Mon, 24 Dec 2012 00:00:00 IST

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