SRINAGAR: Hitting out at the Jammu and Kashmir government over not doing enough for the man who was tied to an Army jeep, former chief minister Omar Abdullah said that it would have been better if the man was a stone pelter.
"Forces did what they had to, one who tied was given medal, but what about Farooq Dar? he benefitted from nothing. Maybe if he was really a stone pelter, it would have been better for him. At least Hurriyat would have accepted him," Omar said.
He also added that the state government did not even provide any monetary help to Dar. "When state human rights commission took notice of it, compensation was announced by them, but J&K government could not even give that. In a written reply, you said if we give compensation it would mean forces are guilty," he added.
Defending the government stand, Deputy CM Nirmal Singh called Omar's remarks unfortunate. "This was unfortunate stand by a former CM. Army, the institution making sacrifices for the country, don't have rights to approach law? They are demanding that they (Army) should be hanged for filing a return FIR but didn't utter a word against stone-pelters," Singh said.
A video showing a man tied to an Army jeep as a shield against stone-pelters during the April 9, 2017, bypoll to the Srinagar Lok Sabha constituency had drawn widespread condemnation and anger.
In the video that surfaced, Farooq Ahmad Dar from Khansahib in Budgam district was seen strapped to the front of a moving Army jeep and a soldier was heard saying, "This will be the fate of people who throw stones."