‘Most of us have no financial dealings whatsoever with Army’

Breaking his silence over the political storm triggered by the former Army chief’s statements, Chief Minister Omar Abdullah on Wednesday said Gen V.K. Singh’s “accusations” discredited and vilified all mainstream political parties, including his National Conference, in Jammu and Kashmir.

Speaking to mediapersons here, Mr. Abdullah said: “Both my government and party have stated our concerns about what he [Gen. Singh] has said. I won’t call them revelations [but] I believe these accusations cannot be dismissed out of hand. They require further investigation. This matter is being taken up formally by me with the Government of India for further action.”

“I don’t think that it is appropriate for me to say anything other than the fact that this effort, that is being made to vilify all mainstream political parties, is extremely unfortunate. Most of us have no financial dealings whatsoever with the Army. But these sorts of statements and accusations cause us great difficulties here,” Mr Abdullah said.

Meanwhile, Ghulam Hassan Mir, ‘associate member’ of the Congress and Minister for Agriculture, who, according to an in-house Army inquiry, has received Rs 1.19 crore from the crack military intelligence unit Technical Support Division, issued a statement, saying the allegation was baseless.

Sources close to him told The Hindu that influential sections of the political establishment in New Delhi had “categorically turned down” the Chief Minister’s demand for a judicial inquiry into the allegation and keeping Mr. Mir away from the Cabinet until his name was cleared.

People’s Democratic Party president Mehbooba Mufti told a news conference that Gen. Singh’s revelations “painted all mainstream parties and politicians in J&K black,” though not every leader was being funded and controlled by New Delhi.