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Blockades kill Kashmiris slowly: CPI(M)’s Tarigami tells Centre

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on September 17, 2019 Published on September 17, 2019

A file photo of Mohammed Yusuf Tarigami   -  The Hindu

Four-time MLA in Kashmir Assembly and senior CPI(M) leader Mohd Yousuf Tarigami, who was released from house arrest recently on the orders of the Supreme Court, made an emotional appeal to the people of the country to raise their voices in support of Kashmiris.

Questioning the Centre’s “mantra” that no one has been killed in the Valley after the abrogation of Article 370, he said the blockades are killing people slowly. He said the livelihood of the people has been destroyed and the arrests of former chief ministers will make enemies across the border happy.

CPI(M) General Secretary Sitaram Yechury, who addressed a press conference here on Tuesday along with Tarigami, said the CPI(M) has filed a writ petition in the Supreme Court questioning the abrogation of Article 370, the reorganisation of the State into two union territories and the clampdown on media and public activities. Yechury said the Centre violated its stand taken three years ago that that the use pellet guns will be stopped and discussions will be held with all stakeholders to address the Kashmir question. “Restoring normalcy is in national interest,” Yechury said.

Yechury said Tarigami was an elected member for about two-and-a-half decades from an area which is affected by terrorism, and questioned his detention. “He has been at the forefront of struggles against terrorism. People supported him consistently. He lost members of his family. Our consistent fight against terrorism is non-negotiable,” he said.

He said the writ will address such issues and how the Centre deals with the problems in the State. Both Tarigami and Yechury welcomed the Supreme Court’s intervention in the matter. Tarigami said he will visit various parts of the State as the court has allowed him to travel.

‘We are not terrorists’

Reminding the BJP that the people of Kashmir opted to stay with secular India despite a “vacillating Raja Hari Singh”, Tarigami said the “very foundation of the unity of India with Kashmir is under assault”, by the decision to abrogate Article 370.

“Listen to the version of the people of Kashmir. We all want to live peacefully. I am not a foreigner,” he said.

The duo also questioned the imposition of Public Safety Act against former chief minister Farooque Abdullah. “We, Abdullah, and others are not terrorists. It is such a horrible time. I am very disturbed,” Tarigami said.

Published on September 17, 2019
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