Jammu and Kashmir National Conference Vice-President Omar Abdullah.  file

Jammu and Kashmir National Conference Vice-President Omar Abdullah. file | Photo Credit: PTI

Former J&K chief minister and National Conference (NC) vice president Omar Abdullah on Monday cautioned against the Lieutenant Governor administration’s move to terminate the government services of relatives of militants and separatist leaders in Kashmir.

“This is not the way to win the hearts and minds of people. Nobody is advocating that hardcore militants should be given government jobs but it is also wrong to punish somebody just because they have the misfortune of being related to a terrorist. This is not something that we will ever support,” Mr. Abdullah, who is touring the Jammu region, said.

He said no terrorists were given jobs in J&K, while referring to the recent statement made by LG Manoj Sinha. “However, we did not punish people because they were relatives of terrorists. Is it fair for me to punish you for the crime committed by your father or a son? If God forbid a close relative of Mr. Sinha Sahab commits a crime, should he be sent to jail? Mr. Abdullah said.

The former chief minister said the law of natural justice is not that the relatives are punished for the crimes of someone else. “It is very unfortunate that people are punished in Kashmir for the crimes of others,” he added.

He said people living in J&K are anxious today. “No one knows when a new order dispossessing people of their lands will be issued by the ruling government,” Mr. Abdullah said.

Taking potshots at the government over Gujarati ‘conman’ Kiran Bhai Patel getting a security cover During his stay in Kashmir, Mr. Abdullah said, “He told the government here that he works in the PMO (Prime Minister’s Office), they didn’t even try to find out. My ex-minister who faced attacks doesn’t get an escort vehicle even if he requests with folded hands.”

He also targeted the LG administration over engaging a blacklisted company, Aptech Limited, to conduct a job selection process in J&K. “An inquiry should be constituted into who brought Aptech here and where did the fraud take place. The youth should be reassured that their future won’t be toyed with,” he said.


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