Weakening Article 370 will be the biggest anti-national act, says Mehbooba Mufti
In a clear message to ally BJP, Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Mehbooba Mufti on Monday said anybody weakening Article 370, which grants special status to the state, will be doing the “biggest anti-national act” even as she contended that a “conspiracy is being hatched against our culture and state” in this regard.
She also attacked those opposing setting up of colonies for Kashmiri Pandits in the valley, saying that by doing so, they do not want in their “heart of hearts” the displaced people to return.
Speaking in the Legislative Assembly, she underlined that Pandits cannot go back to live in their original villages and other places in Kashmir in the prevailing security situation when even political workers and MLAs and MLCs are seeking a protective set-up.
On Article 370, Mehbooba, who is running a coalition government with BJP, said “there are some forces within this country who think that by scrapping Article 370, the issue of Kashmir will be resolved and everything will be alright.”
BJP’s stated position is that Article 370 should be scrapped for total integration of J&K with India.
“There is a conspiracy being hatched against our culture and state. Those who speak against Article 370, they don’t know that the Article 370, which is our special status, is in our character because of which we have dismissed the two ideological (narrative of two-nation theory) and also religion, and have shaken hands with India,” Mehbooba said.
Respecting concerns expressed by National Conference leader and former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah that some people are trying to weaken Article 370 through the judiciary, she said, “If they hurt its soul by raking up Article 370, Section 35-A repeatedly etc, I feel that there will be no big anti-national act anything than this.”
Vowing to oppose any move to erode Article 370, she said, “There will be no bigger anti-national thing than this because when you weaken this uniqueness of Kashmir through judiciary, then those forces in Kashmir Valley, who want to put an end to the composite culture in Kashmir Valley and want to have people from one community (Muslims) only, with one attire and one way of life, you will only make them successful.”
Then there will be no meeting ground for mainstream politicians, the chief minister said.
She asserted that her endeavour will be to ensure that “such things do not happen in which our uniqueness of the Jammu and Kashmir -- uniqueness because of a status and a special position -- does not get diluted.”
Side by side, she said, “we need to work together to save the composite culture for which Article 370 protects it.”
The PDP leader said, “If they hit those roots which is the basis of our composite culture, civilization and Kashmiriyat and brotherhood of Hindu, Muslim and Sikhs, which Gandhi ji also had seen in Kashmir, I feel that there will be no big anti-national act anything than this.”
She added, “These are the same forces, which we have seen here also, who think by destroying the composite culture in Kashmir and make it a one religion-based state (Muslim state), particularly valley.”