‘People in Kashmir, Egypt both fighting for rights’

Published: February 13, 2011
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Mehbooba Mufti the president of opposition party People's Democratic Party (PDP) speaks at a press conference in Srinagar on February 12, 2011. PHOTO: AFP

Mehbooba Mufti the president of opposition party People's Democratic Party (PDP) speaks at a press conference in Srinagar on February 12, 2011. PHOTO: AFP

Comparing the situation in Kashmir with the one existing in Egypt, Peoples Democratic Party President Mehbooba Mufti on Saturday said that despite the conditions being similar, people in India were no better off than Egypt: both peoples have to fight for their rights, be it democracy or self-determination.

“The people in Egypt were fighting for democracy and we are fighting despite being a democracy for the past 60 years,” she was quoted by Indian newspaper The Hindustan Times as telling reporters on Saturday at a press conference.

“I congratulate the people of Egypt for what they have achieved. But at the same time I appreciate the army of Egypt. They protected their people during this crisis,” she said.

Mehbooba criticised the government at the centre for not acknowledging the transition of people in Kashmir from “violence to peaceful protests.”  “After 9/11 there was a transition in Kashmir from bullet to ballot but unfortunately central leadership ignored that transition,” she said.

Citing the differences in Egyptian and Kashmiri leadership, she also lashed at the state government. “When people came out in Egypt, nobody accused them of being one or the other. But here when people came out on roads demanding justice, our own government labelled them as Lashkar-e-Taiba, paid agents and now they are saying that thousands of youth pelting stones on the roads were drug addicts. The leadership is maligning its own people,” she said.

Chief Minister Omar Abdullah responded to the Mehbooba’s comments on social networking site Twitter. “She wants army rule in Kashmir as well since her party is in opposition,” Omar tweeted.

Published in The Express Tribune, February 13th, 2011.

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Reader Comments (15)

  • Babloo
    Feb 13, 2011 - 10:31AM

    Mehbooba Mufti was aminister and his father the chief minister of Jammu and Kashmir , just few years ago.. hER PARTY WAS DEFEATED IN FREE AND FAIR ELECTIONS. sHE CAN WIN THE NEXT ELECTION AND COME BACK TO POWER. tHATS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN iNDIA AND eGYPT.Recommend

  • Rabid Indian
    Feb 13, 2011 - 10:35AM

    I hate politicians ! Recommend

  • Feb 13, 2011 - 12:45PM

    This woman, if I am not mistaken, would have been killed by her kidnappers if the government of India had not released some militants. Either she is suffering from a prolonged impact of the Stockholm syndrome or despite that life-changing event, she is being another opportunistic, unethical politician where proximity to power is inversely proportational to her proximity to those who seek to destabilise the region in the name of one religion. Recommend

  • harkol
    Feb 13, 2011 - 1:25PM

    Huge difference – Egypt has had a single person rule for 30yrs, and was army dominated. Kashmir has had periodic elections, though a couple are alleged to have been rigged, most of them have been acceptable.

    Most important difference – Even the Muslim Brotherhood hasn’t made islam an issue for revolution. In Kashmir, the biggest issue is ‘muslim majority’ needing to seperate and biggest leaders of Kashmir seperatists are either muslim preachers or like Syed Gilani advocate a Sharia state.

    While world would welcome an democratic egypt, it’ll have very little stomuch against a Islamic Kashmir that’s right in the belt of Taliban-AlQaeda.Recommend

  • Anwar Hasan
    Feb 13, 2011 - 1:31PM

    There are more than 200 million Muslims living in India. How come only the Kashmiri Muslims are fighting for their rightsRecommend

  • akash
    Feb 13, 2011 - 4:15PM

    Not surprised at all by the level the politicians can stoop to in subcontinent. well she was in govt not long back and we should ask her what she did to empower people then.. recently Prime Minister called a meeting of all party from Kashmir to talk.. and this woman declined.. she could then have raised her issue.. but no… playing it to galleries.. typical subcontinent politician.. Recommend

  • Kabir
    Feb 13, 2011 - 4:50PM

    @deep

    “This woman”-as you put it-was not kidnapped. Her sister Rubaiya was. That was in 1989 when Janata Dal was ruling Delhi and her father Mufti Sayeed was Home Minister of India. If GoI did what it did, it was due to two reasons (a) PM VP Singh felt it was right thing to do since GoI is paid to solve issues; he was doing no charity and (b) his HM could not have committed filicide.

    Her point of view is debatable but a personal attack on her based on faulty information is improper.Recommend

  • Khan
    Feb 13, 2011 - 6:12PM

    didn’t she give parts of Kashmir to china in some presentation she made a day or two ago?

    something is burning here!!Recommend

  • uzma
    Feb 13, 2011 - 7:51PM

    @Anwar Hassan:

    Kashmiris are the only ones fighting for their independence, because they are the only ones under a brutal military occupation.

    @Babloo:

    There can be no free and fair elections in a place, which is one of the world’s most militarized place. Also people want right to self-determination and not your empty elections, which in Kashmir have a surprising frequency of being rigged. Recommend

  • Watty
    Feb 13, 2011 - 8:52PM

    This lady could move herself to the “other” Kashmir under illegal Pakistan occupation and try to exercise her “Ajadi” and experience the differences herself. If she has common sense she would be applauding India for preserving Kashmir’s demography and protecting its borders despite constant mischief from across the LOC. Or perhaps she would prefer that India lift these constitutional protections and allow its citizens from the rest of India to settle in Kashmir if they so desire in full exercise of their rights. At present citizens of Indian Kashmir enjoy greater rights than the rest of Indians. After all the Kashmir under Pakistan occupation has no special status and is being inundated by people from Punjab and other provinces of Pakistan.Recommend

  • Anwar Hasan
    Feb 13, 2011 - 9:38PM

    @ Uzma
    Kashmir can never get independence. It will become another breeding ground for Jihadists…..like Afghanistan.Recommend

  • Singh
    Feb 13, 2011 - 9:57PM

    She and her family are suffering with stockholm syndrome.

    She is the biggest opportunist .why not india mature as china,ban all these kashmiri party and abrogate article 370!Recommend

  • ravi
    Feb 13, 2011 - 10:00PM

    @uzma:
    uzma frankly people like you living in a militrised state like pakistan consider everybody the same.
    You just have to be in india during election periods to see for yourself the wide powers of election commission of india.
    Only then you can understand that days of rigging are gone in india. Recommend

  • wahab
    Feb 14, 2011 - 12:33AM

    I think Kashmir issue should be resolved for peace and harmony in South AsiaRecommend

  • Tony Singh
    Feb 14, 2011 - 4:22PM

    Ms. Mufti trying telling this to Kashmiri Pandits who are the biggest sufferers of your brand of politics which is either I will be CM or “Azadi”. (My way or highway?)Recommend

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