Srinagar: A day after Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi accused the Abdullahs and Muftis of trying to break the country, National Conference president Farooq Abdullah hit back by saying that if his family wanted to break India, “there would have been no India”.
The NC leader said it was Modi who was trying to break the country, but he will not succeed.
“Our party fights for the rights of all the people be it Muslims, Hindus, Sikhs, Christians or Buddhists and we will continue to fight. Even if Modi tries his best, he will not be able to break India. I want to tell him from here today that you will break, but India will not. You accuse the Abdullahs of trying to break India, if we wanted to break India, there would have been no India then,” he said.
Addressing a workers’ rally near the city centre, the former chief minister said Modi should remember that it was him (Abdullah) who held the country’s flag when no one wanted to fight elections in the state in 1996.
“Modi should remember that in 1996 when no was ready (for elections), I was the one who went ahead even as my colleagues said we should not contest. But I wanted the people to get rid of the difficulties they were facing…I held this flag and went ahead at that difficult time. You (Modi) should never forget that. There was no one here then, but now you scream,” he said.
Referring to Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh’s statement that the Government of India would make a stronger sedition law, Abdullah said “we will see what you will do” but Modi and the BJP cannot win the hearts of Kashmiris.
“You cannot win our hearts. Hearts cannot be won by (using) pellet guns or banning highway or by doing injustice. You say we are not loyal, par agar hum wafadar nahin, tum bhi toa dildar nahin (if we are not loyal, you are also not large-hearted). You say we are your atoot-ang (integral part), how are we the integral part? Where? This is a lie. If we are your integral part, then do justice with us,” he said.
The former Union minister said Modi and BJP president Amit Shah were “destroying” the country and challenged them to hold an election rally in Kashmir.
“Where does he (Modi) address a rally? In Kathua, in Akhnoor. He does not address Muslims in Kashmir because he knows that he has betrayed them. You (Modi) did not raise your voice when the Indian Muslim, who did not go to Pakistan and accepted India, was attacked by your people. Were they not Indians? Had they not spilled their blood for India?
“Which leader fought the British when General Dyer killed people at Jalianwala Bagh? He was Saifuddin Kitchloo a Kashmiri from Baramulla. And hundreds of those killed there were from Kashmir. Did you ever remember them or take Kitchloo’s name? You only remember those who killed Mahatma Gandhi. (Nathuram) Ghodse’s temple is built in India and you said nothing. Are Muslims not a part of India? We are not dividing the country, but you are, on religious lines. You and Amit Shah are destroying India. So, desist from accusing us,” he said.