New Delhi: Former chief minister and National Conference supremo Dr Farooq Abdullah has described as deplorable the Union Territory administration’s handling of the issue pertaining to Kashmiri Pandit (KP) community and in particular that of the protesting employees appointed under the Prime Minister’s package.
Speaking at a function to release the book titled “Glimpses: My Life as a Journalist” written by veteran journalist Brij Bhardwaj on the day which also marked the author’s 88th birthday, here last evening, Dr Abdullah said that this shoddy handling of the situation with the employees unabatedly protesting in Jammu is a clear reflection that the situation in Kashmir Valley is far from normal. “What else does it reflect. This is contrary to the claims of the Lt Governor and his administration,” he said.
Dr Abdullah said that he was aghast at the administration’s response that the KP employees will not be paid any salary without working. “These employees are willing to work. But whose responsibility is it to provide a safe working atmosphere to them,” he asked.
Castigating the current regime, he said that an atmosphere of hate is being created as means of electoral victories. “You will win elections but lose the nation,” he warned.
Senior Congress leader and former Union Minister, Ajay Maken said that the book is a compendium of Bhardwaj’s five-decade journey as a journalist during which he covered diverse issues. “The book has something for everyone ranging from Kashmir, to resort politics and to covering conflict zones,” he said.
Maken pointed out mentioning how Chaudhary Devi Lal and then NT Ramarao had to herd their MLAs to safer resorts, as pointed out in the book, is relevant to today’s politics pulling down legitimately elected governments.
Stating that a thin line divides the ballot versus bullet theory, he said that the democratically elected governments should be careful in understanding the spirit of this theory. “The bullet takes over the ballot if democratic values, as is the case with pulling down elected government, are sought to be eroded,” he added.
Veteran editor H K Dua while releasing the book lauded the author’s effort and described him as a professional with a human face.