National Conference chief Farooq Abdullah has said that he wants to bring back the India of Mahatma Gandhi. Addressing workers during a day-long convention of the party at Sher-e-Kashmir Bhawan in Jammu, Abdullah also rued the fact that he was called “Pakistani and Khalistani”.
“We never raised any slogan against India. We were called Pakistanis. Here in Jammu, ask our workers, we were called Pakistani. Thank god we were not called Khalistani. But I was called even that. They said that I am with Bhindranwale. In which Gurudawara were shots fired?…They think that we will get scared….We will fight you and will do that honestly….We follow the path of (Mahatma) Gandhi and want to bring Gandhi’s India back. We have made an agreement with Gandhi’s Hindustan, not with Godse’s Hindustan. We never differentiated between Hindu, Muslim and Sikhs,” said Abdullah (loosely translated from Hindi/Urdu).
#WATCH | We never raised any slogan against India. We were called Pakistanis… I was called even Khalistani… We follow the path of (Mahatma) Gandhi & want to bring Gandhi's India back: National Conference chief Farooq Abdullah in Jammu (07.12.2021) pic.twitter.com/MAVlzoGPas
— ANI (@ANI) December 8, 2021
Abdullah also said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi had promised to remove ‘dil ki doori and Dilli ki doori (distance between hearts and the distance with Delhi)’. “Neither were the hearts connected nor was the distance between J-K and Delhi bridged. He should tell the people if anything has changed,” Abdullah said.
The National Conference chief said the fight for restoration of Jammu and Kashmir’s special status will neither be easy nor will God send someone to fight it for them. “We have to stand up and fight for our rights. We have not picked up guns or grenades or pelted a stone. We do not demand prime ministership or presidency but our fight is for our rights which were snatched from us,” he said.
Abdullah also expressed concerns over the state of affairs in Jammu and Kashmir, saying bureaucrats have become authorities unto themselves, which has subjected the people to miseries and difficulties.
The former chief minister said anti-poor decisions are galore and referred to the halting of the ‘Durbar Move’, which he said was consciously introduced to ensure integration among the people of Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh.