Omar flays attacks on Mirwaiz, Bilal
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Last Updated: Wednesday, December 01, 2010, 00:52
Srinagar: Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah today deplored the attacks on moderate Huriryat Conference Chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq saying it was against the democratic traditions of the country.

"It is against the democratic traditions of the country where freedom of speech, no matter how unpalatable it is, is a right which needs to be respected and protected," the Chief Minister said in a statement here.

He said "the strength of our democracy is in its values of tolerance and to allow a fearless expression of dissent only strengthens the democratic fabric of the country".

"Our democracy is a matured democracy and is capable of absorbing political dissent and diverse view points and so we should provide every individual an opportunity to air his or her opinion in a democratic manner," Omar said.

He said the right to debate, disagree and reject anybody’s views is also an inherent part of democracy but the rebuttal must be decent and the response and disagreement must be civil and best expressed in a democratic fashion.

The Chief Minister said the Mirwaiz and his colleague Bilal Gani Lone, who have both been victims of militancy having lost their father?s to terrorists bullets, have been a part of a dialogue with the union government from time to time.

"Such incidents only defeat the peace-making effort and it should be the endeavour of all that they remain part of the solution and not get pushed to the wall so as to become a part of the problem," Omar added.


First Published: Wednesday, December 01, 2010, 00:52

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