Srinagar: From his home turf, former IAS officer Shah Faesal on Monday started his political innings by addressing thousands of people at Tourist Reception Centre (TRC) Kupwara. Thousands of people thronged the venue to listen to Faesal.
He started his speech talking about uprooting corruption and nepotism from the state. he added that he will fight for the honour and dignity of the people.
Amid slogans, “Dekho Dekho koun aaya, Sher aaya Sher aaya” Faesal, waiving at a sea of people said he has returned from America and quit a top bureaucratic job for the people of state.
“I have come back to my village to work for the people. Everyone takes money to do work. A common man is the worst sufferer. In the last ten years being in the bureaucracy I have witnessed how files are delayed. The corruption has engulfed the state,” Faesal said.
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He also said that India and Pakistan should hold dialogue to resolve Kashmir issue as it was a political issue that cannot be ended by development packages.
“When the politicians are asked what is the issue, they say ‘Kashmir is a problem. Give them monetary packages’. Some portion of the 2004 package is yet to be spent. Do we only need money? Is Kashmiri a beggar?
“We want to tell them that Kashmir is a political problem,” he said.
Advocating dialogue, Faesal said India and Pakistan should sit together to resolve the Kashmir issue. “They should not play with the lives of Kashmiri people by throwing money around,” he said.
He said that PHD scholars and other educated people are losing their lives.
“While I raised my voice against atrocities being committed on different minorities in the country, the situation in Kashmir over the past few years forced me raise my voice. We saw our PhD scholars were martyred, there is no one to talk about the educated youth.”
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“Politicians are holding to their chair and minting money while Kashmiris are making sacrifices for their political rights. There is no one taking note of this,” he said.
The former IAS officer likened his tenure in the IAS to a jail term.
“To tell you honestly, I spent the last 10 years in a jail. During these 10 years, in many ways I tried to serve my people and succeeded as well. But what I saw in these 10 years, despite being a senior government officer, the fire in my heart, the atrocities and injustices I saw, I used to feel helpless.
“I was looking for an avenue where I could talk for the people of Kashmir and also work for their betterment,” he said.
He added, “I thought I will go to America and work there, live a good life. But upon reaching there I realized how long educated Kashmiri youths will lose their lives. I have come back to my village. I will move from village to village to meet the people, to understand their sufferings and collectively solve the sufferings,” Faesal said. He said even today people from far of areas have to stand in long queues at the secretariat and prove their identities to meet the officers and get their works done.
“Common people have to face the brunt on every side,” he added.
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He spoke about people from Kupwara being called with names like Gujjar and other slangs. Terming it unfortunate, he said people are left to face miseries at every level of administration from Secretariat to other lower levels of administration.
After his resignation, Shah Faesal, said that he took the step to protest against the ‘unabated killings and lack of political outreach from New Delhi.’
(With inputs from KNS)