'Jungle raj' in Kashmir, alleges Mehbooba

Peoples Democratic Party president Mehbooba Mufti Wednesday alleged that there is ‘jungle raj’ prevailing in Kashmir as a result of which people are “living in fear”.

Mehbooba, who is contesting from Anantnag Lok Sabha constituency, was speaking to media-persons after addressing an election meeting in remote Brimarnarasar-Chatergul village of Shangus.

“It is total lawlessness in Kashmir and people are living in fear. Even a magistrate along with other employees on poll duty was thrashed on the national highway by the army,” she said.

“Our roads are being closed. The jail inmates are being beaten up. Bodies of those killed in encounters are being mutilated and charred beyond recognition by spraying some chemical,” she alleged.

“It is our human and religious right that the bodies of our children should be handed over to us so that the families could have a glimpse of their loved ones, are given proper bath and then burial. However, these days there is interference in our religious rights also,” she said.

Mehbooba claimed that the bodies of militants were not mutilated in her tenure as CM.

“No, it did not happen during my tenure. In fact, I was pressurised to not hand over the bodies of local militants to their families for last rites. I also stood firm when I was asked to go for a crackdown against Jamat-i-Islami,” she said.

The repression against Kashmiris is forcing them to regret their decision of acceding with India, the PDP president said.

“Maharaja Hari Singh and Sheikh Muhammad Abdullah had acceded with India that belonged to people from every religion—Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs, Christians. However, these days Kashmiris are being so much suppressed and humiliated that it sends shivers down their spine. The repression they are subjected to makes them regret the decision of joining hands with India,” she said.

Mehbooba also condemned the security forces who had stopped an ambulance ferrying a cancer patient on the Srinagar-Jammu highway near Lower Munda in Anantnag during the movement of CRPF convoy last Wednesday.

The cancer patient who was being taken to Doda after being discharged from SKIMS Srinagar died on way to his home.

She appealed to the people to vote for her so that “the special status of J&K is protected”.

Launching a scathing attack on NC, she said the party only made fortunes during their 40 years of rule.

“They have occupied palatial Banglows and land in Gupkar and have amassed properties outside state and abroad,” she alleged.

She asked people to check the details of her and Abdullahs’ properties declared in election papers.

Meanwhile, prominent TV journalist Barkha Dutt traveled with PDP leaders and later shared the stage with Mehbooba.

She was seen sitting beside her, triggering criticism from National Conference.

“When a journalist chooses to share the stage, journalism gets a jolt,” tweeted NC spokesperson Imran Nabi Dar while sharing the picture of Barkha sharing the stage with Mehbooba.

PDP leader Peer Mansoor welcomed Barkha and later introduced her to the gathering as “the most honest and fearless journalist who comes to Kashmir frequently to report”.