Former Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti today warned of an agitation over what she said encroachments on the democratic space by Governor Satya Pal Malik and his controversial decisions. She said that such decisions should have been left for the new popular Government.
Speaking to reporters in a hurriedly arranged press conference at her Gupkar residence in Srinagar today, Mehbooba said the speed at which Governor is taking decisions seems there is a hidden hand behind it with a definite agenda. “What is the urgency to issue orders on a daily basis? If the trend doesn’t stop, we will be forced to launch peaceful agitation,” she said.
“We respect Governor sahib. Why is he encroaching into democratic space? There is no emergency in issuing such orders. It seems somebody’s agenda is being run here and I hope Governor sahib is not involved in this,” said Mehbooba.
The former Chief Minister said that Governor is taking decisions like that of J&K Bank, Roshni Act and PRC rules which are against the interests of the State. “We had hoped that the Governor will be cautious in dealing with the sensitivities of the State. But unfortunately every day orders which add to insecurities of the people are being issued…all except few political parties are worried,” she said.
She said: “The repealing of Roshni Act was a blow to the Pahari and Bakerwal community, who were expected to reap benefits of this law but only richer could avail its benefits and when it came to Gujjars and Bakerwals, the law was repealed by Governor in absence of a popular Government.”
She said there are reports about granting the status of division to Ladakh area of Kashmir.
“There are Hill Development Councils in both Kargil and Ladakh. All of us – PDP, NC and other Independents – believe that Pir Panjal and Chenab valley should be granted status of divisions if you think of Ladakh,” she said.
“We are not against creation of Ladakh division as we have already Autonomous Hill Development Councils in Ladakh and Kargil but if Ladakh is given a divisional status and Chenab valley and Pir Panjal are neglected, we will launch a peaceful agitation against the Governors administration for such a discriminatory decision”, she said.
Mehbooba said that Governor is taking controversial decisions in haste which he should have left for the next popular Government to take. “We believed that Governor having a vast experience as a politician will deal cautiously with the sensitive issues but the way he is tinkering with the laws and the institutions showed that he is working on the dictations of some hidden hand on a hidden agenda”, she said.
When asked about the resignation of former Finance Minister Haseeb Drabu and threat to quit the party by Muzafar Hussain Baig, Mehbooba evaded queries and said: “People come and go. We were very sorry to see Drabu quitting as he was brought with love and affection by party founder late Mufti Mohammad Sayeed. I wish Drabu all the best.”