Srinagar: Former J&K chief minister Mehbooba Mufti said on Tuesday that her party had “bottled the djinn called BJP” before entering into an alliance with it, but the Hurriyat leaders did not reciprocate to the advances made to them for resolving the Kashmir issue.
“In English we say, ‘we had bottled the djinn’. On our own terms and conditions we formed government with the BJP,” Mufti said while addressing her party’s newly elected DDC and Panchayat members in Srinagar.
She started her speech by thanking the workers who have kept her name and the party’s name alive in Kashmir and then went on to talk about the formation of government with the BJP.
Mehbooba said that nothing the PDP demanded was outside of the Constitution of India. “We have never talked about anything that is not constitutional. We laid the condition of talks with Hurriyat because we had the example of LK Advani talking to them. We asked BJP to talk to Pakistan because we had the example of Atal Bihari Vajpayee talking to them. We asked for a guarantee against revocation of 370 because it was the Constitution of India that gave us 370,” Mufti said.
She added that her father died of a sudden and she could not do much in her two years as chief minister because of the volatile situation in Kashmir. “But I ensured that a parliamentary panel came to the doors of Hurriyat leaders, who were unfortunately turned away, sending a negative message about Kashmiri people to the rest of the country,” she said.
She also blamed the separatist leadership for not reciprocating to the then Home Minister Rajnath Singh’s repeated invitations for talks.
“Six times he offered talks but there was no response. I ensured a ceasefire and still there was no response,” she said.
Mufti said that her party, the PDP, refused to do the BJP’s bidding. “I refused to do things that I was asked to do, like booking youths under PSA, cracking down on the Jamaat, and not returning the bodies of slain militants to their families,” she said.
Mehbooba also took on the BJP for their “illegal abrogation of Article 370” by saying that the Modi government had scrapped the Constitution of India itself by scrapping Article 370.
“It was the Constitution of India that guaranteed us the privilege and scrapping it meant that they scrapped the Constitution of India,” she said. “However, no matter what they do and what they inflict on the people of Kashmir, they will have to resolve the Kashmir issue,” she asserted.
She also talked about the farmers’ protests going on in Delhi, saying that the Modi government was playing with the Constitution, as “whatever is against the people is against the Constitution.”