Srinagar: National Conference President and Member Parliament from Srinagar Dr. Farooq Abdullah and Party’s Vice President Omar Abdullah, President J&K Apni Party Syed Mohammad Altaf Bukhari, Chairman Peoples Democratic Front (PDF) and J&K Pradesh Congress Committee (JKPCC) in their separate condolence statements on Thursday condemned the killing of BJP’s councilor Rakesh Pandita reported Wednesday evening from Tral area of South Kashmir’s Pulwama district.
In a joint statement with senior National Conference leaders, Dr Farooq Abdullah said, “the killing of BJP’s Municipal Councilor from Tral has saddened me. I condemn the incident in unequivocal terms and share in the grief of the bereaved family. I pray for peace to the departed. I share the grief of the bereaved family and express my solidarity with them at this difficult time. The incidents raise a question mark on the overhaul security situation in JK,” he said. In the joint statement of National Conference leaders Party Vice President, Omar Abdullah said “BJP councilor Rakesh Pandita joins a long list of mainstream politicians targeted and assassinated in Kashmir because of their association with electoral politics. I unequivocally condemn this attack and convey my heartfelt condolences to his family. May his soul rest in peace,’ he said.
Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) president and former chief minister, Mehbooba Mufti in a tweet, extended condolences to the bereaved family and prayed for the peace to the departed soul. “Shocked to hear that BJP leader Rakesh Pandit has been shot dead by militants. These senseless acts of violence have brought only misery to J&K. My condolences to the family & may his soul rest in peace,” Mehbooba tweeted.
Condemning his party councilor’s killing in Tral the BJP’s National General Secretary Tarun Chugh in statement issyued on Thursday said that it was heinous act of Pakistan-sponsored militants who want to throttle democracy in Jammu & Kashmir. Chughsaid that at a time when Prime Minister Narendra Modi is trying to bring about development and growth in J&K, militants’ vicious game plan is being plotted by the Pakistan ISI, which, he said, would be decisively defeated by the security forces. He said targeting BJP leaders in J&K makes the militants’ vicious and heinous plan to kill democracy in Jammu & Kashmir is explicitly clear. Chugh said people of J&K want progress and development. “Violence is fast losing sense and relevance,” he said.
Militants in J&K are desperate to please their masters in Pakistan but it’s time they realise their foolishness and join the mainstream, Chugh added
Former minister and Peoples Conference (PC) chairman Sajad Gani Lone in a tweet said that this gun is a curse as another non-combatant has been killed by the gunmen. “Yet again gunmen attack a non combatant. This gun is a curse. Just ponder. Since the day this menace came into Kashmir. What have we seen. In a nut shell total disempowerment of the Kashmiri. Dear gunmen. Can u please go back where u came from. We have had enough,” Lone tweeted.
In a condolence statement issued here on Thursday the President Jammu & Kashmir Apni Party Syed Mohammad Altaf Bukhari said that violence in any of its manifestations is not going to yield anything for the people except for death and destruction. “He was connected to grassroots level and was always ready to deliver his unstinted services for the public welfare. I on behalf my party strongly condemn this cowardly attack on a municipal representative of his caliber”, reads Bukhari’s condolence statement. Bukhari said the elements inimical to peace and prosperity in J&K should not be allowed to go scot free and Government must identify and nab the culprits behind such attacks and book them under stringent laws. “The cycle of violence should end somewhere so that people of J&K heave a sigh of relief as we have witnessed enough death and devastation for long now. We cannot afford the loss of another generation,” he remarked. While expressing solidarity with the bereaved family, Bukhari said “such dastardly acts can never be acceptable to any civilized society”. ‘Furthermore, he also sought a thorough security review of the political workers who reside in more violence prone areas in J&K. “The union home ministry should also take a review of the security situation in J&K and take measures to prevent recurrence of such attacks in future,” he added.
Condemning the killing of BJP councilor Rakesh Pandita the PDF Chairman and former Minister Hakeem Mohammad Yaseen said “killing of any unarmed and innocent human being was against tenants of all religion”. Stating that “ in a democratic set up every citizen has right to express his views adding that dissent was essence of democracy”, Hakeem conveyed his heartfelt sympathies with the bereaved family”.
In a similar condolence statement Jammu & Kashmir Pradesh Congress Committee (JKPCC) mourned the loss of BJP councilor and conveyed deepest condolences to family and friends of the deceased and also prayed for eternal peace departed soul. The Party also demanded stern action against the killers of Rakesh Pandita and ex-gratia to the family of deceased. The party in it’s above referred statement also urged the Government to ensure protection to political persons in J&K. CPI (M) leader Muhammad Yousuf Tarigami also condemned the killing of unarmed political activist Rakesh Pandit in Tral area of South Kashmir’s Pulwama district and said that violence in any form is condemnable. Terming the incident as most unfortunate he said that there is no justification to kill any unarmed person. There is an urgent need to put an end to civilian killings. CPI (M) expressed deep sympathy with the bereaved family