Set up Commission to probe 17 yrs militancy: Mustafa
1 December 2007
The Daily Excelsior
By Sanjeev Pargal
Jammu: The National Conference has demanded constitution of a Commission to probe 17 years long militancy in the State saying this would expose the forces pointing accusing finger at the party and will give an answer to persons like hard-liner Hurriyat Conference leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani. 'We are answerable till 1989. But what happened later is an issue which can be inquired into by a Commission. Let the Government set up a Commission. We are ready to face the probe. An impartial inquiry will definitely expose the separatists like Geelani', veteran NC leader and former Minister Sheikh Mustafa Kamal said today in a conversation with the Excelsior. Mr Kamal, who had entered the Assembly last year after defeating political heavyweight and PDP leader Moulvi Iftikhar Hussain Ansari from Pattan Assembly segment, said the NC has all reasons to fear rigging in next year’s Assembly elections as the PDP-Congress want to stick to the chair. 'Mufti (Sayeed) is power hungry. He won’t give up the chair easily. He is a known master of election rigging and he will go all out to repeat the practice in next elections', he alleged. Asserting that the NC was a strong contender for power in next year’s Assembly polls, Mustafa Kamal, who had held several important portfolios like Health and Medical Education and Works in Farooq Government in 1987 and 1996, claimed that the people of the State were repenting for having voted Congress-PDP to power. 'The coalition Government has done nothing constructive in the State barring making it a No. 2 in corruption. Corruption is rampant, development has come to a halt, schools and colleges are running without buildings, staff and other infrastructure, hospitals are without doctors and there are no job opportunities', Mr Kamal observed and said the Chief Minister and Ministers were busy only in laying foundation stones and issuing statements. 'People of the State wouldn’t like to repeat the mistake they had committed in 2002', he averred. Mustafa Kamal favoured Assembly elections in April next year. In support of his demand, he said there is a harvesting season in August and September. In these two months, the migratory population also stay in upper reaches. From May to July, there will be tourist season. 'If the Government wants maximum participation of people in the elections, it should go for the polls in April', he added. The NC leader said the Central funds released during six year rule of the NC Government from 1996-2002 were given to the coalition Government in just two years. Still, he added, the present Government has totally failed in completing any worth mentioning development project. 'With just Rs 35 crore a year funds for health sector, the NC had given the State SKIMS, Medical Colleges, Lal Ded, Bone and Joints and Children hospitals besides several District Hospitals. The present Government has only laid foundations of Medical Colleges’ expansion in 5 years and even construction work has not been started so far despite receiving funds worth several crores from the Centre. Mr Kamal said the price rise, unemployment, corruption, development, boost to Indo-Pak ties vis-a- vis Kashmir solution and autonomy will be main election planks of the NC. The PDP-Congress have failed to fulfill the promises made to the people in 2002 elections, he alleged.