Ex-Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Farooq Abdullah has once again landed himself in controversy after he made another controversial statement, stating that the people of Kashmir do not feel Indian and would prefer being ruled by China.
In an interview to TV anchor and journalist Karan Thapar, Mr Abdullah said Kashmiris are “slaves” who are being treated as second class citizens. “Today Kashmiris do not feel Indian and do not want to be Indian … They are slaves … They would rather have the Chinese rule them,” Mr Abdullah said during the interview.
Abdullah also rejected the Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) claims that the citizens of Jammu and Kashmir are happy with the abrogation of Article 370. He further said that if the Army troops had not been deployed in the state then people would have come out in large numbers to protest against the Centre’s decision.
The Modi government revoked Article 370 and 35A from Jammu and Kashmir on August 5, 2019, which gave special status to the state.
“Every Kashmiri believes the new domicile laws are intended to create a Hindu majority … The gap between Kashmiris and the rest of the country is wider than ever before and growing,” Mr Abdullah said.
Kashmiris have lost the trust that connected them to the rest of the country, said Abdullah and accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of misleading and deceiving the people.
The National Conference chief further said that Kashmiris had no love for Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah. He said that there was a difference between Modi and former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee.
Abdullah also revealed that he had met PM Modi about 72 hours before the abrogation of Article 370. When he asked the prime minister about the sudden increase in the number of troops in the region, Modi said that soldiers were being deployed due to security purposes, Abdullah said, adding that he left the meeting feeling assured.
On a question whether the prime minister deceived him, Abdullah said, “He is deceiving the nation now so deceiving Farooq Abdullah does not make a damn difference.”
Abdullah was among the various Jammu and Kashmir leaders who were detained under Public Safety Act on August 5 last year after the Centre abrogated Article 370. He was released in March.