Farooq To Geelani: Save Kashmir From Destruction
8 September 2007
The Daily Excelsior
Srinagar: Indirectly holding Syed Ali Shah Geelani responsible for the killing of people, National Conference leader Farooq Abdullah today asked the hard-line Hurriyat Conference chairman to adopt a path which could save people of the State from destruction. 'I appeal to Hurriyat chairman Ali Shah Geelani to adopt a path which could save Kashmiri people from further destruction,' Abdullah told National Conference workers assembled at the Mausoleum of party founder Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah at Naseem Bagh on his 25th death anniversary. 'Mistakes could be committed by any one, but what a mistake which becomes cause for killing of fellow countrymen,' he said. Abdullah, who has been declared by the party as Chief Ministerial candidate for next year's Assembly elections, said in the run to capture power he could not see people dying. He said he has analysed seriously the situation of the State for the last 20 years and came to the conclusion that widespread destruction has taken place in Jammu and Kashmir. Abdullah also appealed to the people to make a critical analysis of the prevalent situation in the State and asked was it useful to raise pro-Pakistan slogans. Addressing separatist leaders, he said 'can these leaders do justice to us who were promising to bring independence all these years ?' Abdullah also blamed the Centre for 'compounding the problems of the people' in the State by encouraging growth of leaders who are singing different tunes. Referring to his recent Dubai visit, Abdullah said he had discussions with several Pakistani leaders, including two former Army Chiefs, and apprised them of the destruction caused by the introduction of gun in Kashmir and requested them to extend cooperation in resolving the issue. About internal problems in Pakistan, Abdullah said the neighbouring country was passing through a critical phase and 'we always pray for safety and integrity of that country'. Asking NC members to strengthen the party, he said in 1996 Assembly elections candidates were not available but the situation has changed now. The candidates will be selected carefully and only honest and popular candidates would be given the party tickets, he said. Abdullah said his son and party president Omar Abdullah was a straight forward youth and he would prove to be a good Chief Minister of the State. He said the NC is the treasure left behind by his father and founder of the party Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah and people of the State are its protectors. Abdullah said the NC, which emerged single largest party in 2002 elections, could have 'purchased' a few MLAs to form the Government but did not resort to such unethical practice. 'By loosing power, we availed the opportunity to rectify our mistakes and people also availed the opportunity to test other parties,' he said.