Congress leader Mani Shankar Aiyar, who is known for making controversial remarks, on Monday launched an attack on 36 Union Cabinet ministers visiting Jammu and Kashmir, by calling them “cowards”.
Addressing a public gathering on CAA here, he said, “They are sending 36 union ministers to Jammu and Kashmir. But, look at these cowards, 31 are going to Jammu and only five to Kashmir.”
He further questioned, “And who are they going to talk in Kashmir? To the former Chief Ministers? They can’t. They are all in jail. Farooq Abdullah is in jail. Omar Abdullah is in jail. Mehbooba (Mufti) is in jail. Whom are they going to talk to.”
On January 15, it was reported that in a massive outreach by the central government in Jammu and Kashmir two months after it formally became a union territory, about 36 Union Ministers are scheduled to visit it from January 18-25 to meet people and exchange ideas on the possibilities in the region.
Referring to the majority of the ruling BJP in the Lower House, Aiyar said, “Immediately…these arrogant people, it just went to their heads. They said this is the golden opportunity. We are never going to get 303 seats again. Let us push through all the anti-Muslim legislation that we have in mind.”
Meanwhile, commenting on the abrogation of Article 370 and 35A of the Constitution in Jammu and Kashmir as well as the bifurcation of the erstwhile state, Aiyar said, “They are trying to create a political class. Political class grows from among the people. You cannot have a BJP that doesn’t have a single vote in the Valley coming up.”
“Yes, there are traitors like the ones we are seeing now, but then in every society, there are traitors. These are not representatives of the people, if they were, they would have been elected many many years ago…How many elections we have had in J-K? Some of these people are those who were elected and have now decided to betray the cause for which they stood,” he said.
Commenting on the Shaheen Bagh protests, the Congress leader said, “And why are they so frightened of going to Shaheen Bagh? For 34 days, they have been sitting there protesting against this attempt to divide India once again on religious grounds.”