Ishfaq-ul-Hassan | India Tomorrow
SRINAGAR—Unfazed by her detention, Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) president Mehbooba Mufti sent a strong message to Modi government saying that they will neither raise the ‘white flag’ nor submit to injustice.
“No amount of coercion can force the people into submission. We will fight for our rights. We are not the ones who will raise white flags despite fatal blows being dealt with our economy and livelihood,” Mehbooba said while felicitating her newly elected DDC members.
Mehbooba, who is the vice-president of Peoples Alliance for Gupkar Declaration (PAGD) said the resounding success in the District Development Council (DDC) polls have come as a shock to those who wrote political obituaries of her party.
“In their arrogance, they thought by not allowing me to campaign, intimidating us, arresting our leaders, PDP will not perform. Ours is not just a party but a movement that will never compromise on its ideals and core political philosophy of dialogue and reconciliation,” she said.
People Alliance for Gupkar Declaration, a conglomerate of six major political parties including National Conference, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Peoples Conference, Awami National Conference, CPIM, and J&K Peoples Movement, won more than 110 seats. PDP alone won over 27 seats.
Launched to fight for the restoration of special status and statehood, PAGD was contesting the majority of 280 DDC seats in Jammu and Kashmir. However, all the constituents used their respective party symbols.
“Tireless dedication of workers and party cadre ensured the success of candidates despite obstructions from the system, threat of arrests and massive flow of money deployed by the communal forces and its proxies,” she said.
Mehbooba pledged to continue to work for the restoration of lasting peace in Jammu and Kashmir. “Dialogue is pivotal for lasting peace. We will not allow Kashmir to be a battleground but work relentlessly so that J&K acts as a bridge of peace between India and Pakistan,” she said.
She exhorted the winning candidates to serve the people with all honesty and integrity. “People are reeling under the tremendous hardships and the onus and responsibility has befallen on all of you to rise up to the occasion and serve the masses,” she said.
Meanwhile, PAGD president and former chief minister Farooq Abdullah cautioned that the anti-democratic forces will contrive to encumber the efforts for the restoration of people’s rights.
“However, our workers and functionaries withstood all sorts of difficulties on their own with no support coming from any quarter. I am hopeful that the party rank and file will keep up with resolute behaviour. Unity holds the key to success. In the days our detractors will employ all sorts of enticements, coercion, and intimidation to break our unity. We on our behalf have to strengthen our ranks against their machination and face the challenges ahead of us resolutely,” he said.