If Article 370 is temporary, then our accession to India is also temporary: Farooq Abdullah
If Article 370 is temporary, then our accession to India is also temporary, said former Chief Minister Farooq Abdullah here on Monday.
Talking to media persons here, the National Conference (NC) leader said: “If Article 370 is temporary, then our accession is also temporary. When Maharaja Hari Singh acceded, it was temporary.”
“It was said at that point of time that a plebiscite will happen and people will decide whether to go with India or Pakistan. So, if that didn’t happen, then how can they remove Article 370,” he asked.
Talking about the extension of President’s Rule in the state, Abdullah said: “They had no other option than this. Extension of President’s Rule was necessary because of the Amarnath Yatra.”
The senior politician claimed that the Election Commission of India (ECI) was ready to hold polls but the Central government stopped it.
“They should have conducted the polls after the Lok Sabha polls and before the Amarnath Yatra because security forces were here. I know the ECI and officials had decided to hold the polls but the Central government interfered and stopped it,” he said.
Reiterating the necessity of holding talks with ‘everyone’ in the Valley, Abdullah said: “Talks should be held with everyone. If we really want to solve this issue which is troubling for so many years, then we need to talk to everyone. Vajpayee ji held talks. Advani ji held talks. Musharraf also held talks. Everyone held talks. The issue can only be solved through talks and not through wars.”
He said that when Balakot happened, what did the government say — 300 people were killed there. “Today Home Minister Amit Shah is himself saying that nobody was killed there. So why did they weave this story? Only to seek votes?”
“How are they saying today that nobody was killed? They should apologise to the people of India for this. These people lied,” he added.
Accusing the BJP of ruining the state by joining hands with the PDP, the former Chief Minister said: “They are the real ghosts. They ruined the entire state by joining hands with the PDP. Why are they targeting us today? Because they know that National Conference is going to win and they can’t keep the NC away. We have shown this to them in the parliamentary elections. We would have even won Ladakh Lok Sabha seat if the Congress’ runaway candidate did not contest the polls.”
Responding to the claim of Union Minister Jitendra Singh that previously ruling parties in the state encouraged terrorism, Abdullah said: “I want to ask him that he was a doctor here for so many years. Did he see terrorism during those years?”
“I challenge him. As long as there are no talks, terrorism won’t vanish. If they want to solve the problem, they will have to solve it by talks so that we can stay in this state with dignity,” he said.
The former Chief Minister, however, refused to comment on Zaira Wasim’s decision to quit Bollywood. “I cannot say anything about that. I wish her the best for whatever she wants to do,” he said.(ANI)