Omar Abdullah emerging as ‘tallest Tarbaaz’: Sajad Lone
Srinagar: Training guns at Omar Abdullah for his recent assertions, Peoples Conference chief Sajad Gani Lone Wednesday alleged that National Conference leader was “emerging as the tallest ‘Tarbaaz’ (liar)”.
In a statement here, Lone said that the People’s Conference (PC) is a 45-years-old party which has seen nothing but “state excesses and jail”.
“More than 700-800 workers of PC were put in jails under the Public Safety Act (PSA), thousands were killed, some shot, some lynched, two of our leaders even died in the jails. So, it’s not like we are a party of the establishment; instead everyone knows the National Conference (NC) and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) are what one would call an establishment party,” Lone said.
He said “PDP was formed in 2002 by the establishment. National Conference was first a cadre-based party and turned into an establishment party after 1996.”
He said PC has always “faced brutality and prejudice and the most of it came from the National Conference.”
Lone said he finds it very humorous that the people who spent a decade or more of their lives in prison and were brutally beaten are being accused by those dearest to the establishment.
“What can they say to the Peoples Conference… my father spent a decade in Tihar prison for nothing. Recently someone showed me a video in which they alleged that my father said something about Article 370 in 1970 even though my father denied that several times. My father only was jailed because he was saying nothing but truth,” Lone added.
Responding to a question on Omar Abdullah’s recent statements, Lone said that “Omar Saheb is becoming the biggest charlatan of Kashmir. Of-late his new con is that ‘if we’d have been in power we would have done this and that’, but we have already seen when you (Omar Abdullah) were in power during 2010, when young teenagers were being killed on the streets, the hardened curfews…. The Union home secretary had to come forward to give the relaxation during those curfews not you.
“We also saw you when the resolution for internal autonomy was passed and then rejected by the BJP government…. Who were their allies at that time?”
At that time, Lone added “proprietary demanded your resignation, but you didn’t resign. Hence I call you a charlatan.”
He said “when Article 370 was revoked by the parliament, it was the same Parliament in which his members were laughing, and none of them did anything. If someone raised their voice and protested for it at the time, it was the Fayaz Mir Saheb — that is also the history to remember.
“So to say that if we were in power we would have done something is merely hoodwinking the people. We know you would have done nothing, it’s just pure drama,” he added.
Lone also said it would be unfair to equate the issue of Article 370 and farm laws.
“Don’t be under any delusions of such thoughts. Nobody is concerned with what Kashmiri Muslims are saying. Remember the demand for re-enacting Article 370 will never end. If I stop saying it, or Omar Saheb stops saying it, someone else will continue; it will never die. And there will be a day, which I’m very confident of, that they (Centre) themselves will restore it; not because of our advocacy but because the pressure they will face for it,” he added.
Lone also maintained that “Article 370 will be restored either in the Parliament or in the courts; I am very sure that they will have to give it back to us, you just wait and watch.”
“While we were still in detentions here, we were the first party to challenge the decision in the court. We fought for it and will keep fighting for it. It is evident that we have to convince the parties and it’s clear that until BJP is in power, they will not give it back. But BJP won’t last forever, and it depends on who will be the next ruling party at the Centre,” he added.
Reacting to Omar Abdullah’s public jibe at PDP, Lone said he felt really bad for what they said about the late Mufti Saheb for joining forces with the BJP.
“They made it look like they have never made an alliance with the BJP themselves. The first one to ally with the BJP was Omar Abdullah himself, everyone knows it,” Lone said.
“You see how Omar Saheb and Mehbooba-ji sit together in an alliance (PAGD). It’s a different matter that it shows the helplessness of Mehbooba-ji to sit with him. But should he have said what he said yesterday?” he asked.
Lone also said that the whole concept of vote division in Kashmir is “pure nonsense”.
“Only a few parties had vote-banks in Kashmir. In pre-1987 era, National Conference and Sheikh Saheb undeniably had a considerable cadre base. In 1977 election, Abdul Gani Lone Saheb, Geelani Saheb and Kabuli Saheb were the only ones to win. At that time Mufti Saheb lost his deposit.
“In 1983, Mufti Saheb again lost his deposit. In 1987 Mufti Saheb was the president of the Congress party which allied with the NC to infamously rig the election. When PC, JeI and other parties later boycotted elections, the voters went to the newly formed parties. And today when we are back, they came back to us.
“If National Conference talks about the vote division that’s still understandable, but how can PDP say the same? They had no vote from the start, which is a reality. They used to fight from RS Pora, the first constituency Mufti Saheb won and later fought from Muzaffarpur. Basically what National Conference is saying is that none should be fighting against them. How is that even possible?”
Lone also accused the NC of dividing votes in the Pir Panchal and Chenab valley regions to ensure a “safe passage for the BJP”.