Former chief minister and PDP chief, Mehbooba Mufti, on Monday blamed Prime Minister Narendra Modi of having wasted his massive mandate by not addressing the Kashmir issue.
Mehbooba was talking to media persons in Srinagar on the sidelines of the 3rd death anniversary of her father Mufti Sayeed.
Mehbooba said that Modi wasted his mandate not only in Kashmir but also throughout the country.
She said that the PDP had taken a grave political risk by aligning with the BJP but this was done in the hope of betterment of Jammu and Kashmir. However, the hopes dashed to the ground as Modi neither followed the footsteps of Atal Behari Vajpayee in handling Kashmir nor did he implement the agenda of the alliance that was signed between the PDP and BJP.
Mehbooba stressed that there was no alternative other than dialogue with Pakistan and separatists to restore peace in Kashmir. India has to initiate talks with Pakistan without which the situation will not improve in the Valley.
Mehbooba said that after her father’s death she was reluctant to forge an alliance with the BJP but “I” laid certain pre-conditions, including the NHPC returning power projects to J&K and the Army vacating some prime lands in Anantnag and Kargil.
However, certain leaders weakened “my” position by rushing to Nagpur and offering to break the PDP and form the government with BJP. Her obvious reference was to the Peoples Conference leader Sajjad Lone and Imran Reza Ansari.
Replying to questions, Mehbooba justified her visit to the families of slain terrorists and claimed that she went there as the women of these families were being harassed. She said that as chief minister she had visited the families of policemen and bank guards who were killed by terrorists.
She said that she promised amnesty and implemented it by withdrawing police cases against nearly 11,000 youth booked for stone pelting. Mehbooba said that she did not allow the CBI to take over the case of the alleged rape-murder of an eight-year-old girl in Kathua and never compromised on the special status of J&K and also did not let BJP tinker with it.
PDP’s patron, Muzaffar Hussain Beig, said that the PDP will not be wiped out in the coming elections but its strength might weaken. Desertion by some former ministers and legislators was a challenge before the party leadership and we have to carry everyone together.