‘We are too aggressive for Cong; NC is pliable’
In an exclusive interview with Aurangzeb Naqshbandi, PDP patron Mufti Mohammad Sayeed reinforces his agenda of ‘self-rule’ and defends the PDP’s withdrawal of support to the Congress government over the Amarnath row.india Updated: Jan 04, 2009 02:24 IST
How do you see the election results?
The participation of the people is a healthy sign. The elections followed the Amarnath land row, during which tens of thousands of people were out on roads, protesting against the land allotment decision and the economic blockade. People saw the facilitation of the resolution of the Kashmir issue through this democratic exercise and gave us a substantive, if not decisive, mandate.
Do you think withdrawing support to the Congress was a wrong decision?
It was a correct decision. During my tenure, I had cancelled the land allotment order. Pilgrims are anyway using the land for the last 200 years. I could see what will happen. I don’t know under what deliberation Ghulam Nabi Azad had to pass the order. He did not consult me.
Then why were you ready to enter into an alliance with the same party again?
We never sought an alliance with the Congress. Media reports suggesting so are a bundle of lies. I think our endeavour to maintain the identity of the people of J&K and our self-rule agenda were not compatible with the Congress’ policies. Having PDP as a partner won’t have helped it in the general elections. We are aggressive as far as our issues and policies are concerned. The NC is more pliable for them.
What is the future of the NC-Congress alliance?
I wish the alliance well. The PDP-Congress coalition lasted almost six years. So should it.
Did the poll boycott campaign by separatists help the NC?
Yes, it certainly did. The NC swept the polls in Srinagar where only 20 per cent turnout was recorded.
Your party has been accused of following a soft-separatist policy.
We have always favoured a dialogue with the separatists.
What about the PDP’s role in the future?
There is a decisive role ahead for the PDP in charting out a new destiny for the state and its people. It will now be its mission to work towards the implementation of its J&K-centric agenda.