Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik (File photo)
Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik (File photo)

Keep national interest above cheap politics: J-K Governor to Rahul

ANI | Updated: Aug 26, 2019 22:51 IST

New Delhi (India), Aug 26 (ANI): In a scathing attack on Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik on Monday said that his statements on the "fragile" situation in the state were being used by Pakistan and suggested that the opposition leader should keep national interest above "cheap politics."
"Rahul Gandhi should understand that the visit would have created problems for the people. He tried to create obstacles in the peace process when he was not allowed to do so. Rahul on his return to New Delhi made false statements about the situation in Kashmir," Malik said in a statement.
"I want to tell Rahul Gandhi that such statements made by him are being used by Pakistan against India," he added.
The Governor said Rahul should understand that the situation in Jammu and Kashmir is "fragile" and it is the issue of national interest.
"His statement harms the nation's interest. I want to urge him that he should keep national interest as a top priority rather than using the sensitive issue for his cheap politics," he said.
Rahul Gandhi along with a delegation of opposition leaders was on Saturday sent back from Srinagar airport after they reached there demanding the release of detained leaders.
The delegation wanted to visit Kashmir Valley to take stock of the situation in the region after the abrogation of Article 370 provisions but was not allowed to leave Srinagar airport. They had to return to the national capital.
The Jammu and Kashmir administration had earlier urged the opposition leaders not to visit the state and said that the visit by politicians would be a violation of restrictions that have been imposed in many areas of the valley.
"I want to make it clear that when I had invited Rahul Gandhi to visit Jammu and Kashmir, my intention was that he will refrain from making baseless statements about Kashmir by having the first-hand appraisal of the situation," he said.
Accusing Rahul Gandhi of playing politics with his invitation, Malik said the Congress leader arrived along with a host of opposition leaders and insisted to meet all the detained leaders besides interacting with media persons.
"When Rahul Gandhi played such kind of politics with my invitation, I withdrew my invitation and it was now prerogative of the administration to decide whether Rahul should visit Kashmir or not. The administration made it clear beforehand that at a time when we are making all-out efforts to maintain peace in the valley, no politician should come to make a breach rather than help in maintaining peace," he said.
Malik had said he would send a plane to Rahul Gandhi so that he could visit the state instead of making "irresponsible" claims about violence in the state following the Centre's decision to end its special status.
However, the Congress leader declined his offer of an aircraft and instead asked for the "freedom to travel and meet the people" along with other opposition leaders. (ANI)