JAMMU, Jan 3: BJP ally and Social Welfare Minister Sajjad Ghani Lone today strongly defended the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and launched a blistering attack on National Conference and Congress saying they were playing politics over dead body of Burhan Wani even as he said he would resign if his charges on imposition of Public Safety Act (PSA) by then NC Government were proved wrong. As he quoted his conversation with NC leaders Mian Altaf, Mohammad Akbar Lone and Devender Singh Rana, Rana said he too would quit if the charges are proved saying no such conversation ever took place between him and Lone.
Intervening during debate on adjournment motion in the Assembly, Sajjad Lone went all guns blazing against the National Conference and Congress saying there record was very high in human rights violations and that they have nothing to do with protesters but were only using their name for political purposes.
“I’m grateful to the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)…their Government at the Centre…they gave me the passport…they gave visa to my children. The previous Government had denied me the passport and visa,” Lone, a leader of People’s Conference and an ally of the BJP, said.
Taking on former Chief Minister and National Conference working president Omar Abdullah, Sajjad Lone said when Omar had alliance with Narendra Modi (the Prime Minister), everything was good. “When I’m in alliance with them, it’s wrong. It’s not only your domain,” he remarked.
Amidst frequent interruptions to his speech by NC and Congress members especially by former Speaker Mohammad Akbar Lone, Sajjad said: “historically, National Conference and Congress have a role behind every Kashmir killing as they signed so much treaties”.
Taking on Congress Legislature Party (CLP) leader Rigzin Jora, who had often been using the term ‘unholy alliance’ for PDP-BJP Government, Sajjad Lone said “you were in alliance for 40 or 50 years, was everything holy? Congress is equally responsible for unrest in Kashmir”.
Sajjad also countered opposition attack over use of pellet guns which have been responsible for widespread injuries, saying it was the National Conference government which had introduced these weapons for mob control in the Valley.
“Nawang Rigzin Jora (CLP Leader) has started a new term of unholy alliance and those whom you (Congress) mug down in last 40 or 50 years where holy. Do you have any account how many people have you killed, if there is any political party which is number one in terms of killings, is Congress”, he said in J&K Assembly on the debate on Kashmir situation here.
Taking a dig at the opposition NC and Congress, Sajjad said, “I don’t think that the opposition has a bit of sorrow for those who were killed instead they are score settling.”
He said “My only request to the opposition is let us not treat those killed as ornaments, … Who likes killing their own people. We are not security experts, it is they (Opposition) who brought the pellet guns and in an emergency they were issued and police had to use them”.
“The point is that if pellets were brought why did you bring it, did you bring it to play holi”, he added.
“The BJP government came, God bless them, they not only gave me passport but visa to my children. You talk of communal riots but …One thing I will tell you about Congress, that be it corruption or communal riots you top in both”, he said.
He blamed the opposition of “indulging in theatrics over the killings in Kashmir.”
“The NC and Omar Abdullah had to cross thousands of dead bodies to reach here, be it 1987 or 1996. Are you saying that those killed when NC is not in power are more sacred then the ones killed when NC was in power,” Sajjad said.
Asserting that Opposition National Conference and Congress have nothing to do with the people of Kashmir, he charged them with playing politics over the dead bodies including that of Burhan Wani. He called upon the Opposition to at least have respect for the dead bodies.
He said during 2016 unrest, the State Government was in full command of the situation.
“During 2010 unrest (when National Conference and Congress were in power), the Union Home Secretary from New Delhi used to announce relaxation in curfews,” he added.
Lone recalled that during 2010 when 5 youths of Handwara were booked under Public Safety Act (PSA), he first rang up then NC leader Mian Altaf, a Minister and then Mohammad Akbar Lone, then Speaker. There was no response.
“Then I rang up my `brother’ and NC leader Devender Rana,” he said, adding Rana promised to get him back saying ‘Sahab’ and `Bade Sahab’ are taking dinner.
Sajjad Lone said that call didn’t come to him for next five years.
At this, Devender Rana was on his feet and denied any such conversation between him and Sajjad Lone
“I deny. There was never such conversation,” Rana remarked.
Sajjad Lone quipped: “Oh My God” and offered salute to Rana. He then offered to resign if his charge was proved wrong. Rana said he too would resign if the conversation was proved. He charged Lone with trying to create a story in the Assembly.