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JKPCC asks Mehbooba to desist from ‘provocative’, remarks on national flag

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Her remarks reflect the feelings of an average Kashmiri: Soz

Jammu/Srinagar, Oct 24: Dishing out contradictory signals, J&K’s Congress party unit seemed divided over the remarks made by Mehbooba Mufti about not holding any flag ‘unless erstwhile Jammu and Kashmir flag is restored.’

Asking former chief minister Mehbooba Mufti to desist from making highly provocative and irresponsible remarks on the national flag, the Congress unit in the Union Territory on Saturday strongly condemned the PDP chief’s statement on the tricolour.

Reacting to Mufti’s statement on the national flag, Jammu and Kashmir Pradesh Congress Committee (JKPCC) chief spokesperson Ravinder Sharma said it is “highly provocative and irresponsible”, and she has hurt the patriotic sentiments of people.

“Such statements are intolerable and unacceptable in any society,” he said.

Sharma said the national flag is the symbol of the honour and dignity of the country and reminds people of the sacrifices of crores of Indians to achieve freedom and protect the country’s dignity, honour and territorial integrity.

“She should desist from making such outrageous utterances to hurt the sentiments of every Indian,” the Congress leader said.

In her first media interaction after her release from 14 months of detention, Mufti on Friday said she would hold the tricolour only when the separate flag of the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir would be restored.

Meanwhile, senior Congress leader and former Union Minister Prof. Saifuddin Soz on Saturday seconded PDP president Mehbooba Mufti, saying that her remarks on ‘state flag’ reflected the feelings of an average Kashmiri.

“Mehbooba Mufti has reflected the feelings of an average Kashmiri by saying that she will not hold tricolor till the state’s flag is restored with the status of the state,” Soz said in a statement.

“The question is as to what does the union expect from the beleaguered people of Kashmir who are determined to continue their struggle for restoration of the special status. That the Modi government has internationalized Kashmir issue once again is an obvious fact.

“It is not for nothing that the world-famous intellectuals like Noam Chomsky and Johan Galtung have raised their voice against the treatment meted out to Kashmir by the Modi government. Both these high-ranking intellectuals have said that Kashmir has been rendered into a prison with the entire population there as prisoners

“So, it cannot be business as usual in Kashmir after abrogation of Article 370 of the Constitution of India,” Soz said.

Today or tomorrow, Soz added, the abrogated Article 370 or its exact equivalent shall have to be restored. “Otherwise, the constitutional relationship between the state and the union would continue to remain a flawed situation,” he said.

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