Zee Media Bureau
Srinagar: Launching a scathing attack on Narendra Modi, Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah on Monday said he and his family do not need the certificate on secularism from the Bharatiya Janata Party`s prime ministerial candidate.
Hitting back at Modi, who earlier in the day said the biggest blow to secularism in India was delivered in Kashmir from where Kashmiri Pandits were forced out due to their religion, Omar Abdullah said the Gujarat Chief Minister has insulted all Kashmiris with his statement. He added: “I don`t need secularism certificate from you Modi ji, neither does my khandaan, nor do Kashmiris”.
“We are glad that you (Modi) didn`t give us a certificate on secularism, otherwise we might have had to resign,” Omar said.
The J&K CM also mocked at Modi, saying the BJP`s prime ministerial candidate has no knowledge of the state`s history, “so he must not lecture us on secularism”.
Raking up the issue of exodus of Kashmiri Pandits, Omar said they did not leave during Farooq Abdullah` reign, but during Jagmohan`s tenure as Governor, “who is still with the BJP as per my knowledge”. Accusing the BJP of using the issue of Kashmiri Pandits issue to gain political mileage, Omar said that he wants Kashmiri Pandits to return to the J&K.
Defending his father, who triggered a row when he said Kashmir and they will not remain with India if the country becomes communal, Omar said Modi has levelled baseless allegations against Farooq Abdullah.
“Nothing is wrong in my father`s statement,” said Omar, adding: “Farooq Abdullah has only said that Kashmir will not be a part of communal India. What Farooq sahab has said can happen in the heat of campaigning and even the Election Commission has sent him a notice in this regard.”
Daring Modi to come to Kashmir to campaign for the candidates running in the General Elections, Omar said that the Gujarat CM has no courage. “Modi ji, you don`t have the courage to come to Kashmir. You want to be the PM of the country but don`t have courage come to Kashmir.”
“Modi has three candidates but won`t campaign in Valley. He doesn`t know what the hell is happening in state, why will he come here?”
“I don`t think the people of the Kashmir region can have a place for you (Modi) in their hearts,” Omar added.
He further hailed Kashmir as the place which has never been communal and has always taught tolerance, Omar said: “Amarnath Yatra is taken out with the help of Muslims of Kashmir. For Vaishno devi darshan, people come to Kashmir.”
Earlier in the day, using a video message released by the CM`s office to lash out at Farooq Abdullah, Modi said the Union minister has no moral right to preach against Communalism as policies of his father Sheikh Abdullah, him and his son and Jammu & Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah were responsible for communalising the state politics.
"If somebody has to drown then you should look at your (Abdullah) face in mirror. Put your father`s face in front of mirror and ask this question. Those who have chased Kashmiri Pandits out have no face to preach against communalism," he said in a hard-hitting statement.