By criticising BJP led central govt on the last day of the 11th Assembly in the state legislature and making clear his intentions of not contesting the Assembly polls in alliance with the congress party Chief Minister Omar Abdullah on saturday embarked on the most tumultuous phase of his political career to regain lost ground under his feat and resurrect the party machinery in order to win the peoples mandate.
Though Omar sounded emotional on many occasions during his fiery speech but deep inside he was putting up a brave front to keep his flock together to face the resurgent political adversary in the Kashmir valley.
When Omar had joined office of the Chief Minister he was full of energy and carried radiant looks on his glowing face. On saturday he displayed picture post card image of an angry young man, not willing to budge, not ready to listen. He went on to criticize the central government for cancelling talks with Pakistan on the ground of separatists having tea with the Pakistan High Commission Authorities.
Raising the pitch of his voice he said such tea parties used to take place in the past from the time of Prime Minister Narsimha Rao but dialogue process between India and Pakistan was not stopped on this ground.
Omar Abdullah referred to the militant attacks on Parliament and on Mumbai and stopping of dialogue process on both the occasions. He said talks were re-started despite the fact that the conditions put forth by the India were not fulfilled by the Pakistan. He said dialogue is only way forward to address issues.
Giving giving full credit to the people of Jammu and Kashmir for reposing faith in him and giving the chance to serve the State as the Chief Minister during the last about six years Omar said the verdict of masses is always correct and supreme in a democratic setup.
On the occasion Chief Minister appealed the people to come out in huge numbers in the ensuing Assembly Elections and elect their representatives to get their day-to-day issues highlighted at the highest forum.
Omar Abdullah said that Legislature is the right forum to discuss all issues relating to the State and its people. “You have witnessed that the current Assembly during the last about six years besides discussing all issues pertaining to daily affairs of life of the people also deliberated and discussed issues about Accession, Autonomy, Article 370, Law and Order, Security, Development, Politics, etc”, he said adding that Legislature is the institution where from the voice of the people can be transferred to anywhere.
“We are here to represent your aspirations and our success is measured on fulfilling the promises”, he said maintaining that the success of Legislators is not measured by counting the shut downs, peace disturbances, hurdles in the normal life activities, disturbing education and health services during his tenure but on the grounds of providing relief to the people on all these counts and addressing their day-to-day needs. “You have to strengthen the Institution of Legislature to get your all problems and issues addressed properly”, he said and reiterated the importance of taking part in polling by the people in great numbers.
The Chief Minister expressed surprise over the attitude of a political Party which wants to take advantage of poll boycott just for petty Party gains. He said conspiracy is being hatched to hoodwink electorate by utilizing the impact of poll boycott in some areas and by dividing the people in different areas. He said the gulf they are creating for poll benefits cannot be engulfed even after years of completion of Election.
“They should fight the Election on principals and ideologies and accept the people’s decision”, he said and referred to the divide created before 2008 elections adding that the damage caused by it has not till date been repaired fully. He warned the people of the attempts being made to disturb peace and create wedge between various sections of the society.
Omar Abdullah said that while during the tenure of six years of the current Legislature all the difficulties and problems of the people have not been resolved but there is a sense of satisfaction in the Members that the current Assembly fully focused on the issues relating to the public good. He said the current Assembly passed State Right to Information Act, Public Services Guarantee Act, State Vigilance Commission Act and other Legislations to curb corruption. He also referred to the Third Party Monitoring, e-tendering and e-procurement put in place by the government in this regard.
The Chief Minister said that development of power remained on focus and the government during last about six years laid foundation for production of 1500 MWs of power as against 750 MWs since Independence to 2008. He said whosoever will inaugurate these projects in near future but the fact is that these projects will give considerable relief to the people on power supply front which has remained troublesome for a long time in the State.
The Chief Minister said that the development process during the last about six years has been taken to every corner of the State and no area remained out of its range during this period. He said the militancy has reduced by 80 percent and government’s various decisions regarding restoration of peace and tranquillity have yielded positive results.
The Chief Minister said that Rehabilitation Policy for youth who had crossed LOC and wanted to return peacefully was implemented during his tenure. He said 350 youth have returned back under this Policy in dignified way. He said Reservation for Pahari People passed in the current Assembly Session is yet another people-friendly and historic step taken by the government. He said reservation for OSCs has also been enhanced.
Highlighting the importance of Institutions, Omar Abdullah said that these institutions should not be denigrated on personal grounds. “We should not harm these Institutions by judging these on our personal grounds”, he said adding that the success of the Institution does not lie in the success or loss of any person. “If we win the election and describe the process rightful and true and if we lose it raise finger against it, that is not the criterion and it tells upon the Institution”, he said and added that the success of Institutions and the success of people is the ultimate goal and these should be the winners in all situations.
Omar Abdullah criticized a particular media house for handing over verdict of ‘anti-national’ to the duly elected House of people of Jammu and Kashmir for passing a resolution regarding the need of restoration of talks between India and Pakistan. He said that any anchor who has no experience of putting his life to risk just like the public representatives of Jammu and Kashmir to strengthen the Country and safeguard the State ought not to pass judgement in a television studio on the credentials of the elected representatives of the people who have taken oath for the Country and give sacrifice for it.
The Chief Minister said that the elected representatives differ in their political ideologies adding that some are against Article 370 while others are in favour of its further strengthening but all are on same page so far as the strengthening and safeguarding the Country is concerned.
The Chief Minister said that no State Legislative Assembly other than Jammu and Kashmir was attacked by militants and martyred the staff and security. He said there is no political party in Jammu and Kashmir whose members have not been killed and attacked by the militants. He said that keeping security personnel with Legislators is by compulsion as their life is always under threat. He said his Party, ‘NC’ has given sacrifice of its 8000 members for the State, Country and democracy. He said they have not done it to be declared anti-national by a TV channel. “They have scarified for the Country and the State. We are saying to resolve the issues through the talks. What is the other way round? Should we say that war be waged putting the life of the Army and civilian to all kinds of risks and dangers that we will be declared Nationalists by the TV anchor?” he questioned and referred to the contribution of the public representatives towards strengthening of the Country, State and the democracy.
The Chief Minister lauded Speaker Legislative Assembly, Mubarak Gul for exhibiting extra-ordinary patience in conducting the Business of the House successfully. He praised him for his balanced approach in accommodating Members of different parties in the debates and discussions. He also praised the Deputy Speaker Legislative Assembly, Sartaj Madni for performing his role successfully avoiding collusion between the two aspects of being a political leader of a particular party and a Deputy Speaker of the House at the same time.
The Chief Minister also thanked Media, Security, Officers, Police, Assembly Secretariat and others who played their role in the conduct of proceedings of the Legislature.