A day after former J&K Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti dubbed local militants as "sons of the soil", senior BJP leader Kavinder Gupta accused her of pursuing "soft-separatism" to win "communal sympathy" ahead of the upcoming state assembly and Lok Sabha polls. Gupta, the deputy chief minister in Mufti's Cabinet, also blamed the National Conference and Congress for the turmoil in the valley, alleging that the three parties are supporting "anti-national elements" to polarise voters.
"It is the former chief minister's frustration that she has started speaking the language of separatists," the BJP leader said, adding the BJP government at the Centre is ready for dialogue with anyone who is ready to hold talks as per the Constitution of India. Mufti described Tuesday the local militants as "sons of the soil", saying that the Centre should initiate dialogue with the militant leadership to end the "gun culture". Gupta also lashed out at his former Cabinet boss, saying Mufti has "humiliated the Indian security forces by issuing such a statement on the Army Day".
"Every person who is an anti-national and works at the behest of his 'akas' (masters) from across the border, is a militant and playing politics over his killing, funeral and the ensuing agitations is really condemnable," Gupta said. He blamed "political exploitation" by the PDP, National Conference and the Congress for the renewed turmoil in the valley.
"They are now supporting the anti-national elements and polarising the situation in the state," Gupta said and appealed to the people to teach a lesson to all such parties for their "misdeeds" and for "breaking" their promises. Gupta alleged all the three parties have sold the "dreams of autonomy, self-rule and dialogue for peace with dignity but have done nothing to bring peace and prosperity" to the state. "The time has come now for the people to close the chapter for all those who have been exploiting them for the last 70 years," he said.
(With inputs from agencies.)