Modi Ran Away From Debate On Art 370, Refused To Apologize For Riots: Omar

1 April 2014
The Daily Excelsior
Sanjeev Pargal

Jammu: Continuing his tirade against BJP Prime Ministerial candidate Narendra Modi, Chief Minister Omar Abdullah said today that he has refused to tender an apology for 2002 riots in Gujarat while AICC (I) president and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi has apologized for 1984 Sikh riots. He charged Mr Modi with running away from debate on Article 370 of the Constitution of India that grants special status to Jammu and Kashmir after raking up the issue in his December 1 rally at Jammu. Addressing three public meetings at Darhal, Budhal and Kotranka, all falling in PDP held Darhal Assembly segment in Rajouri district, Omar said he had openly challenged Mr Modi for a debate on Article 370 of the Constitution after the latter had raised the issue in Jammu rally. 'I wanted the issue (of Article 370) to be debated with Mr Modi at any place, any forum, any where in the country. I had openly challenged the BJP leader for a debate but he ran away after raking up the issue at his Jammu rally and never responded to my challenge,' Omar said and declared that no force on the earth can snatch the special status of Jammu and Kashmir in the form of Article 370 of the Constitution of India. On second day of his campaigning for Congress candidate Madan Lal Sharma in twin border districts of Rajouri and Poonch during his four days tour of the two districts, Omar said: 'even if Modi becomes the Prime Minister of India, he would have no power to abrogate Article 370'. Asserting that AICC (I) president and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi has apologized for 1984 anti-Sikh riots, the Chief Minister regretted that Mr Modi has refused to tender an apology for 2002 riots in Gujarat. 'Instead of tendering an apology, the BJP Prime Ministerial candidate had passed 'inhuman remarks' against the minorities while referring to the clashes. Mr Modi had even refused to wear a Muslim cap. How can such a person keep the country united'? he asked and called upon the people to reject the BJP in the elections. Comparing Mr Modi with Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi, Omar said while Mr Gandhi represented modern India, Mr Modi stands for a particular ideology and thought. 'There was no comparison between the two and I'm confident that the people of the country would prefer Rahul Gandhi over Modi and make him the next Prime Minister of the country,' the National Conference leader said. 'Rahul Gandhi represents the aspirations of modern India and is sincere in his efforts to ensure inclusive and holistic development of all sections of the society equitably while Mr Modi is beholder of a known ideology and has not been exonerated by the people of the country of the charges of communal riots in Gujarat in which large number of people were killed. 'Rahul is the pulse of young India and takes along with him people of all the age groups in his mission to lead India towards a modern, prosperous and scientific era while Mr Modi and his party BJP has the agenda of dividing the society on various counts to grab the power', Omar added and said that PDP is partner to this tactics of BJP in Jammu and Kashmir. Omar referred to the denial of Mr Modi for cladding a cap presented to him by Muslims and said that this has completely exposed his attitude and his particular thinking. 'How can a person possessing this type of ideology lead a nation which is abode of multi-religions, languages, cultures and ethnic groups'? he asked. Taking on the PDP especially the party MLA from Darhal Zulfikar Choudhary, Omar said the PDP MLA has completely failed to ensure development of the constituency, a result of which the area was left undeveloped. 'This PDP MLA never speaks for development of the area. He along with his party leaders was only interested in breaking chairs and raising slogans in the Assembly. I will now personally look after the area and ensure its development,' Omar said. He said that stepping in the Parliament election by PDP despite knowing its 'imminent defeat' was aimed at dividing the votes particularly in Poonch-Rajouri districts to benefit BJP and Mr Modi. Mr Abdullah said that normally there are three types of candidates in election fray. 'First type of candidates are those who contest just for name sake, second type of candidates contest only to put hurdle in the smooth sailing of winning candidates and the third are sure shots to win the elections', he said adding that PDP represents the second type of contestants who only want to divide the voters in the name of region and religion and benefit its mentor (the BJP). The Chief Minister said that people have experienced the 'mis-governance and nepotism' let loose by the PDP during its three years tenure in power in the State. He said befooling people on various issues is handiwork of PDP and BJP. He said the conduct of these parties in the Assembly and outside has amply exposed their duality and deceptive politics aimed at grabbing power. Omar said the PDP knows that it will not win the election. He said in order to divide the society it has fielded an inhabitant of Rajouri- Poonch belt purposely in the Parliamentary election to supplement and help BJP. However, the NC working president said that people are wiser enough to read between the lines and foil the attempts of divisive forces voting in large number for NC-Congress candidates representing communal amity, brotherhood and equitable development of all sections of the society. Omar cautioned the people against the elements who want to divide the society for political gains and said that voting NC-Congress candidates is to supplement the young, dynamic and sincere leader Rahul Gandhi. Omar also mentioned the support UPA Government provided to the State for carrying forward peace and development and bringing about a healthy change in the progress and economic growth in Jammu and Kashmir. He said launch of Prime Minister's Reconstruction Plan, MGNREGA, NRHM, PMGSY and score of other schemes in the State sponsored by UPA Government led by Congress have given considerable fillip to the holistic and inclusive development of the State. The NC leader also mentioned the thousands of development schemes implemented, completed and commissioned during the last five years and said that the progress graph in the State during NC-Congress coalition Government has touched new heights, breaking all previous records. He also mentioned the support received from UPA Government in this regard. The Chief Minister referred to the legislations enacted in the State to empower people, make service delivery of important services a time bound necessity for administration and bring transparency in the functioning of government and establishing and strengthening the institutions to curb corruption and give good-governance. Omar asked the people to reject those who ask votes on religion, sectoral, regional, cast and creed grounds. He urged them to defeat the attempts of those who want to polarize the atmosphere to divide people. He said PDP and BJP are shedding crocodile tears in different areas and while addressing different sections of the society. 'Their only aim is to anyhow divide people for political gains', he said maintaining that the people of Jammu and Kashmir are fully aware of this kind of politics and will make the preachers of this thinking bite the dust in the Parliament elections. The election rallies were addressed by Minister for Planning and Development, Ajay Sadhotra, NC provincial president Jammu, Devender Singh Rana, NC leaders, Rattan Lal Gupta, Ch Liaqat, Mirza Abdul Rashid and Congress leader Mohammad Iqbal Malik besides NC block presidents, Panchs and Sarpanchs.