Hurriyat selling Kashmiri people: Abdullah
31 October 2001
The Times of India
TIMES NEWS NETWORK
NEW DELHI: In a hard hitting statement against the Hurriyat Conference, Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Farooq Abdullah on Wednesday said Kashmiris should beware of the ''so-called bunch of seven people'' whom he accused of selling the people of the state to Pakistan.''Hurriyat Conference has been taking money from not only anti-nationals but also from people who are anti-Kashmiri. An open example of it is the recent threat by a militant outfit to one of the so-called executive members of the Hurriyat asking him to return the money,'' Abdullah, who was here to attend the chief ministers conference on tourism, said.Recently, a militant organisation, al-Badar, had threatened senior Hurriyat executive committee leader Abdul Gani Lone asking him to return the money that he owed to the outfit.''I have been regularly saying that this bunch of seven jokers has been ruining the fate of Kashmiris and only serving as an extension of Pakistan High Commission,'' Abdullah said.Stating that the number of Pakistan sympathisers had come down to a trickle in the state, the chief minister said the new ''development should serve as a warning to them that Islamabad has never been serious about Kashmiris.''He said immediately after the militants tightened their rein against Hurriyat leaders, its chairman along with another senior executive rushed here to request the Pakistan High Commission for exerting pressure on militant outfits to stop their anti-Hurriyat statements. The two Hurriyat leaders camping in the capital were its chairman Abdul Gani Bhat and former chairman Mirwaiz Umer Farooq.The chief minister said that such allegations against the Hurriyat leaders were not new as its leaders had been facing charges of swindling of money earlier also.''During the Charar-e-Sharief incident one of its old leaders was heckled by people for misappropriating money meant for rebuilding the holy shrine,'' Abdullah said.Terming the statements of Hurriyat Conference as ''empty vessels making more noise,'' the chief minister said ''during all these years they have only brought misfortune to the state and nothing more.''He said the Hurriyat Conference, which did not even properly represent a mohalla (a ward) in the state, should come forward and participate in the elections and ''prove their credentials.''Abdullah said ''they have been drumming up support from international quarters on the Kashmir issue but the day is not far when people will start chasing them out of the streets of the valley.''This violence has claimed somebody''s kith or kin but what have these so-called representatives lost in all these years. These people have seen an economic upliftment with their wards well settled abroad.''