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Home Minister’s AFSPA statement an election stunt: Omar Abdullah

Referring to the statements that fake encounters were happening in Kashmir, Omar Abdullah asked the MHA to investigate alleged fake encounters in Jammu and Kashmir.
12:00 AM Mar 29, 2024 IST | Syed Rizwan Geelani
home minister’s afspa statement an election stunt  omar abdullah
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Sopore, Mar 28:  National Conference (NC) Vice President and former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah on Thursday cautioned people not to be misled or befooled with the statement of Union Minister of Home Affairs, Amit Shah regarding revocation of AFSPA from J&K.

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Talking to reporters on the sidelines of the party convention in Sopore, Omar Abdullah asked people not to get befooled about the statement.

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"The Home Minister has not made any announcement about revocation of AFSPA but he only said they will consider it. So do not misunderstand his statement. I am surprised that after 10 years, he is talking about AFSPA," Omar Abdullah told reporters here.

"They (BJP) deceived the people of Ladakh over granting 6th schedule. So they will also forget AFSPA after facing defeat in Lok Sabha elections from all the five parliament seats," he said.

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Earlier in his address to party workers, Omar Abdullah said that he fought for revocation of AFSPA during his tenure as Chief Minister of J&K in 2011 but the move was sabotaged by the then Gen (retd) V K SIngh who he said is now party colleague of Union Home Minister."Amit Shah Sahab should ask V K Singh why he stopped the process to revoke AFSPA. Why did he say that it will not be accepted by the Army? And today, you are fooling the people that you will revoke AFSPA," Omar Abdullah said.

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He asked the Union Home Minister to first ease the public movement on Srinagar-Jammu highway and also take steps for releasing prisoners from J&K who are languishing in different jails across the country. "Many of our youth are in jails outside the state. Release them first," Omar Abdullah said.

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He said the BJP has started the new process wherein they are using coercive forces on children and grandchildren of separatists to publish advertisements in newspapers. "BJP is repeating the era of which we have faced the brunt when National Conference and Congress workers were forced to quit politics by announcing in newspapers," he said.

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Omar Abdullah said the Union Home Minister Amit Shah should first ease travel restrictions on highways so that people of Kashmir can travel freely even during convoy movement. "People are shown flags to stop their vehicle and make way for the Army convoy. Let people get freedom from these restrictions first," he said.

Addressing the party workers, Omar Abdullah said the people who celebrated the abrogation of Article 370 in 2019 by bursting firecrackers are now deeply upset.

"That is why we believe the decision is unacceptable. It is only our vote that will convey to them that the Article 370 abrogation was wrong and is unacceptable. Abrogation of Article 370 has left the youth of J&K disillusioned," he said.

Referring to the statements that fake encounters were happening in Kashmir, Omar Abdullah asked the MHA to investigate alleged fake encounters in Jammu and Kashmir.

“If they were aware of it, why did not they act then. They should conduct a full-fledged inquiry," he said. He castigated the Central government over its claims of development saying that the development and change is nowhere on ground.

"There has been little progress since 2014. All the projects which started during our tenure have been left untouched. In the present time only outsiders are benefitted on our land in terms of employment and contracts.

Meanwhile, when asked about the INDI Alliance, the NC Vice President said there was no question of unity or reunification as the National Conference remains as an integral part of the alliance.

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