Mufti Mohammed Sayeed was a great visionary: Naeem Akhtar

SRINAGAR: Minister for Education Naeem Akhtar on Thursday termed the former Chief Minister, Late Mufti Mohammed Sayeed as a great visionary who worked on a single mandate to connect hearts, regions and people.

Speaking on the obituary reference in the Legislative Assembly this morning, Akhtar recalled his long association with Sayeed that started in 1986.

“He was an entire school of politics in itself and anybody who entered the school left as a knowledgeable person,” said Akhtar.

“I was particularly inspired from his personal integrity. He never compromised on his principles. He always told me that if I don’t have personal conviction then it is better I left him alone.”

The Minister called Mufti Sayeed a saint of politics as he was a unique leader who was not after acquiring properties or building assets.

“He never talked ill of others and even in their absence he would highlight the best qualities of his political opponents,” said Akhtar.

“Since he (Mufti Sayeed) started his political journey he went through various ups and downs and took number of decisions that looked wrong but ultimately they passed the test of time.”

Akhtar recalled the historic steps taken by Sayeed at the time of adversities. He said that it was due to such steps that the state of Jammu and Kashmir witnessed revolutionary changes. “His main focus was on enhancing connectivity. Be it Srinagar-Muzaffarbad road, Chakan Da Bagh or Mughal Road or Sinthan road, he wanted to open up Kashmir to entire world and also connect other parts of state and world to Kashmir from new roads,” Akhtar said. “Similarly he wanted to connect hearts and it was with the help of his initiatives that he succeeded.”

The Minister said that it was during the time of late Mufti Mohammed Sayeed that connectivity became a discourse in the State for the first time. “Even during the last phase of his life Mufti Sahab took historic steps as he wanted to respect and represent the aspirations of all the regions of the state,” he said.

“At a time when majority of people in Kashmir and Jammu voted for different parties, Mufti Saheb ensured that the aspirations of people from both regions are respected.”

Akhtar said that Sayeed made the democracy competitive in the state. “Earlier we had no options but after Mufti Sayeed came to the scene, he presented before the people another option to express their faith with,” said Akhtar.

“Now parties and individual MLAs feel a lot more accountable. They are concerned that if they don’t work for people then how can they ask for votes from them. Earlier there was no such concern.”

The Minister paid his respects to late K V Krishna Rao former governor of Jammu and Kashmir. He said that former governor delivered amid trying times and ensured that democracy takes roots in the State. “His efforts led to the culmination of 1996 elections and formation of Dr Farooq Abdullah led government,” said Akhtar.

He also paid his great respects to Balram Jakhar, ex speaker Lok Sabha, P A Sangma ex speaker Lok Sabha, Choudhary Lal Mohammed Sabir ex-minister, Mohammed Khalil Jowhar ex-minister, Dr Romesh Chander Sharma ex-minister, Sehdev Singh ex-MLA, and Mohammed Maqbool Muhjoo ex-MLA.