Stay away from gun culture, follow democratic means: Mehbooba to Kashmir youth

File Photo [Aman Farooq/ GK]

Former J&K chief minister and People’s Democratic Party (PDP) President, Mehbooba Mufti on Monday asked youth in Kashmir valley to stay away from gun culture and fight for their rights in a democratic way. 

Talking to the media after addressing a gathering at a membership drive in Srinagar, news agency KNO quoted Mufti saying that “any movement with guns is bound to fail”.

“This is why I have been appealing to the Kashmiri youth not to lose their lives due to bullets. If we want to resolve the Kashmir issue, we need to follow democratic way and force the twin neighboring countries including India and Pakistan to hold dialogue,” she said.

Mehbooba alleged that “some people want Kashmiri youth to pick up arms to show the world that they (Kashmiris) are terrorists and there are no issues with them, thus we need to follow democratic means to resolve our issues”.

With regard to the abrogation of Article 370, Mehbooba said the “accession between J&K and Union of India has been trashed in 2019 by the BJP led regime at the centre”.

Mehbooba said that the decision taken by the central government on August 5, 2019 is “not acceptable and the rights and identity snatched from the people here must be restored”.

“Those who have turned Jammu and Kashmir into a jail must bear in mind that we don’t accept the decision taken by the government. We will fight for our rights till our last breath. Even if a journalist speaks anything, he is being called and subsequently booked under UAPA,” she said.

The PDP President said it was “not Pakistan but India who had given us the special status”. “I don’t understand why BJP is getting angry when I ask my country to restore the identity and special status of Jammu and Kashmir, ” she said. 

She said the Central government “has put an end to the agreement between J&K and Union of India, but still it is the people of J&K who are holding the hand of India”. 

“And when we raise any objection, we are being asked to stay calm,” she said, adding that the situation in Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh is “very critical”.

The PDP, she said, “has always played a role in ensuring peace in Jammu and Kashmir, saying that the party’s aim is to make J&K a bridge for peace in South Asia and want J&K to become a model of peace in South Asia”.

“As SAARC summit is set to be held in Pakistan, we hope our Prime Minister will go there as there is no other way besides dialogue to resolve the issues,” she added.