Protesting against the Union Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde’s refusal to hand over the Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru’s body to his family, the Opposition Peoples Democratic Party on Wednesday decided to boycott the rest of the budget session of the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly.
While forcing Speaker Mubarak Gul to specially speak on the Home Minister’s refusal, the PDP president Mehbooba Mufti alleged that the Congress-led UPA government at the Centre, in league with the National Conference-led coalition government in the State, triggered a fresh spell of turbulence and uncertainty in the State.
She said that Guru’s execution “closed the chapter of peace and reconciliation” in Kashmir and the situation was deteriorating fast.
Mr. Shinde, she said demonstrated his arrogance by refusing to return Afzal Guru’s body to his family.
‘Worse than hanging?’
“He [Mr. Shinde] is now arguing that Afzal Guru’s body could not be returned to the family as it could worsen the situation in Kashmir. Why didn’t he think of it when he decided to hang him to death?” Ms. Mufti asked.
‘Insult to Kashmiris’
She alleged that the Union government and Mr. Shinde brought the Kashmiris on their knees and insulted not only the population in the Valley but also the State Legislature and the government: “Had they returned Guru’s mortal remains, the outraged people in Kashmir would have felt assuaged and obliged. They would have realised that their protests and demonstrations had been acknowledged and rewarded”.
Ms. Mufti was intermittently interrupted by two Ministers of Omar Abdullah’s government, Mohammad Akbar Lone and Nazir Gurezi, when she mounted virulent attacks on the coalition and alleged that the State government was “hand in glove with the Centre in insulting the Kashmiris.”
As the uproar continued and the Opposition occupied the well of the House, the PDP staged a walk out.