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Sheikh Abdullah a symbol of J&K people’s political aspirations: NC


Srinagar, Dec 04: Jammu and Kashmir National Conference on Monday paid tributes to the party’s founder and “legendary” leader ‘Sher-e-Kashmir’ Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah on his 118th birth anniversary, terming him “a man of iron determination”.

Paying tributes to Sheikh Abdullah, the party called him “a father figure and political colossus who helped change Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh from a feudal and colonial society to a free, democratic and secular one”.

The functionaries termed him an “inspiring political stalwart who throughout his political career symbolised the aspirations of the Kashmiri people as no single individual could have even dreamt of doing”. Although rooted in Kashmir, he had attained a national standing with his name becoming synonymous in the minds of countrymen with socialism, humanism, pluralism, and democracy, they said.

His political direction to the state in the shape of the ‘Naya Kashmir’ manifesto had an unmistakably socialistic stamp that guaranteed freedom of the press, freedom of assembly and meetings, the party leaders said, adding, “The vision of Late Sheikh Sahib espoused to provide a reasonable standard of living for all people in the state irrespective of their caste, creed, religion and region. The basic agricultural and economic plan would be the abolition of landlordism, land to tiller and people’s control over the resources of the state.”

They said the spirit of secularism and tolerance possessed by Sheikh Abdullah was the cumulative effect of the environment which generation after generation has fine-tuned the psyche of Kashmiris. “Sheikh Sahib was not any different. He also exhibited the spirit of tolerance, mutual respect and camaraderie towards all sects and creeds. A mass movement organiser, his struggle was never aimed to alleviate the suffering of particular followers of a faith,” the party said.

The NC leaders added, “Sher-e-Kashmir worked tirelessly and suffered incarcerations throughout for the total redemption of the people in Jammu and Kashmir from abject poverty. He gave a new lease of life to the fear-paralysed people of all the regions of J&K. The first cabinet he headed was insightful of his secular temperament. People like GL Dogra, Sardar Budh Singh, Kushak Bakula and DP Dhar were given important portfolios in the cabinet he headed.”

No parallel to contribution of ‘Sher-e-Kashmir’: ANC

Begum Khalida Shah, Awami National Conference President and eldest daughter of ‘Sher-e-Kashmir’ Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah, on Monday paid tributes to her father on his 118th birth anniversary.“Sher-e-Kashmir’s struggle is an open book and he will always be remembered as a leader, teacher, guide, friend and philosopher for his contributions to taking the common masses out of abject poverty and subjugation after hundreds of years,” Begum Khalida said in a statement.“Be it the land to the tiller, free education, emancipation of women, setting up of universities in Jammu and Kashmir, laying of infrastructure for roads, hospitals, education centres with all-round developmental programmes for all the three regions of the state. There is no parallel to such contributions from a leader for his people,” she added.

The ANC President added, “The BJP and RSS are hell-bent on changing the demographic character of Jammu and Kashmir and the drama of abrogation of Article 370 and 35 A was the first step towards that goal conceived by the erstwhile Jana-Sangh, now the RSS. The massive majority of Jammu Kashmir and Ladakh division will never accept this unilateral decision.”



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