Hitting out at hardline separatist leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani for criticising Farooq Abdullah over his recent comment on Pakistan-occupied Kashmir, National Conference working president Omar Abdullah today said, “Hypocrisy is a Geelani trait.” Farooq Abdullah had on Saturday said that PoK belongs to Pakistan and “this won’t change” no matter how many wars India and Pakistan fight. His statement came a few days after Pakistan Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi rejected the idea of an “independent Kashmir”, saying it was not based on “reality”. Reacting to it, Geelani had yesterday said, “These power-hungry politicians always played deceit. These irresponsible and short-sighted people have always served the interests of their masters. They are barefaced, follow their treacherous politics and are never ashamed of their absurd statements.”
In a sharp reaction to the separatist leader’s comments, Omar Abdullah, in a series of tweets, said, “Can Geelani show me his reaction to the Pak PM who has repeated many times recently that Azadi is not an option for Kashmir. Hypocrisy is a Geelani trait.” “It’s not surprising that the Separatist camp has chosen to react to what the @JKNC_President (Farooq Abdullah) has said & not to what the Pak PM said,” he tweeted. “Yes, while Farooq Abdullah’s ancestors were engaged in a struggle this man was fighting elections & cosying up to Janata Party,” the former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister wrote on Twitter.
Meanwhile, National Conference General Secretary A M Sagar, in a statement, said Geelani’s “double standards” stood exposed in his silence over the Pakistan prime minister’s statement as compared to his “selective and uninformed outrage” over party president Farooq Abdullah’s remarks. “Geelani should introspect and stop leasing his voice out to a mainstream political party over a purely personal political agenda that was based on distortion and prejudice,” he said.
Sagar claimed that the National Conference is the only political institution that has consistently and bravely fought to safeguard the state’s political identity and honour in all circumstances. “Even today, it is the National Conference alone which is standing between various intrigues against the state’s special status and the rights of the people. “This role will be noted in history and no amount of selective press statements and distortion of truth will change it,” he said.