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Restore J&K Constitution, Flag and Laws, Says CPI(M) Leader Tarigami

Anees Zargar |
The four-time former J&K MLA, who is also PAGD spokesperson, was addressing youth while flagging off SFI’s 15-day all-India march against communalism.
Yousuf Tarigami

CPI(M) leader and former J&K MLA Mohammad Yousuf Tarigami flags off an All India Jatha (march) organised by the Students Federation of India at Gupkar, Srinagar, on Monday.

Srinagar: CPI(M) leader and former Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) lawmaker Mohammad Yousuf Tarigami on Monday alleged that the Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) government had “criminalised” the faith in the Constitution. He called for restoration of the erstwhile state’s Constitution, flag and laws.

Flagging off an All India Jatha (march) organised by the Students Federation of India (SFI) from different parts of the country, including the Union Territory, from Srinagar’s Gupkar, Tarigami reiterated his commitment to the restoration of the pre-August 5, 2019, special status of J&K as a state.

“We accept the Constitution of India but the Constitution of Jammu and Kashmir was born in the same womb and we demand its restoration. We also want the flag of the erstwhile state back with respect, just like we respect the Tricolour,” said the senior leader, a four-times as the Member of Legislative Assembly (MLA) from the erstwhile state’s Kulgam constituency, who is also the spokesperson for the People’s Alliance for Gupkar Declaration (PAGD), formed after the abrogation of Article 370 and 35A on August 5, 2019.

Tarigami said people who believed in the Indian Constitution “walked on a slippery slope” and were “targeted for their belief”.  “Earlier, some people were hostile toward us for believing in the Indian Constitution. I want to tell them that today the government of India considers it a crime in Kashmir to believe in the Constitution... We are all sailing in the same boat today if you understand what I mean,” he added.

Lashing out at the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP government at the Centre, Tarigami alleged that the Constitution s today  faced “danger”. “The Preamble of the Constitution of India says, ‘We, the people of India… but, they [BJP] use, ‘We, the Hindus of India’ as the new reference, which is unacceptable,” he added.

Stating that Kashmiris “don’t accept the decision” [abrogation of Article 370] made in New Delhi, Tarigami said they (BJP) want Kashmir to thrive as imagined by them. “The Central government is walking on the path to destroy the Constitution. The way things are going, it will be difficult for the poor to even get basic education,” he argued.

The CPI(M) leader added that BJP’s ideological mentor, Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), attempted to divide Hindus and Muslims even before Muslim League leader MA Jinnah did. “Both considered the two communities as separate nations, which resulted in the biggest massacre (during Partition) in contemporary history,” he alleged.

Talking about the ‘All India Jatha’, Mayukh Biswas, general secretary, SFI, said there was an “attempt to divide the country on the basis of caste and religion” against which the 15-day march had been organised.  

“The government has waged a war against students. The attack on Jammu and Kashmir has spilled over to other parts of the country. We want restoration of rights in Jammu and Kashmir that were revoked with the abrogation of Article 370,” Biswas said.

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