Ravinder Raina firebrand BJP President of Jammu and Kashmir is known for his controversial statements. He is known for his anti Pakistan and anti separatists stand. In an exclusive interview with The Legitimate he talks extensively why he venoms fire against Pakistan and separatists in Kashmir.
In Jammu and Kashmir the PDP and BJP coalition government has failed to deliver in past three years of its rule, why your party is now mulling options to form the new government in state?
It is true that we were in coalition with PDP for over three years. But you must be knowing that in coalition government the dominating force is the party which has its chief minister on chair and in our case the problem was same. We had lesser role in the government since the chief minister was from PDP.
Even on insistence of former chief minster late Mufti Mohammad Sayed and Mehbooba Mufti we went to New Delhi repeatedly and sought mega developmental packages for the state since our government is in Delhi.
Prime Minster Narender Modi himself came to Srinagar and announced Rs 80000 crore developmental packages to build up the state’s socioeconomic infrastructure. But we could not deliver the way it was expected.
You have seen the disturbance in the valley. Lots of stone pelting incidents and protests were happening. So we decided to pull out of the coalition. However, I attribute the chaos and the uncertainty in the valley to the failure of government which could not deliver upto the expectations of people and that is evident in the present times as the situation is absolutely normal after the governor rule is imposed.
You can see the speed of developmental works have been expedited in all the three regions now. I believe that people irrespective of their regional and religious belief are our own people in all the three regions and our mandate is to work for them rising above the political preferences.
If you are so satisfied with the governor rule why are you running to form the new government in state and break your old ally-PDP?
Wrong. We are not breaking any party. Had that been the case you have seen in Bihar after the differences cropped up between Lalu Prasad Yadav and Nitish Kumar a new government backed by BJP was in place in just 24 hours. Had that been the case in Jammu and Kashmir if not in 24 hours but at least in a week we could have easily formed the government. But that is not our primary objective. We are focussing on the developmental projects in state, be it Ladakh, Jammu or Kashmir.
The developmental works are going on a fast track mode. We allow governor’s rule to prevail despite the fact in democratic countries elected government is preferred. But we realized that Governor rule is proving pro people and beneficial to the state and we continue to support it.
Can I say that you will not form the government in state as of now?
See, our first priority was to contain the worsening situation in Kashmir and that we did successfully after pulling out of the coalition. The stone pelting has stopped dramatically, developmental works are going on.
But there are still 2 and a half years left for us. It is not easy to become an MLA. It is the hard work of decades and people who voted us to power have hopes and expectations attached to us. But our first priority is to conduct the Panchayat and local body polls in state and after that we have Lok Sabha elections. So we want a government in place that shall work for the welfare and prosperity of people.
You are talking too much about developmental works. But I think in coalition your party ministers ignored Kashmir?
You are wrong. I have been myself visiting the places in Kashmir along with our party ministers to hear the public grievances and set up developmental projects. Our then PHE minster Sham Chowdary inaugurated many projects in Ganderbal. Our deputy Chief minister Nirmal Singh went to Pattan along with local MLA and heard the public grievances.
I will tell you that for BJP people of Kashmir are equally important like the people of Jammu. We can’t ignore the people of Kashmir who are as good Indians as any others. When someone in Kashmir is killed or injured by Pakistan backed militants I feel pain in my heart. I go to their homes to express my solidarity and sympathy. The victim is like my brother or sister notwithstanding his/her political belief. They are our own people.
But there is a different perception among Muslims and generally among Kashmiris that you and your party is anti Muslim and anti Kashmiri?
The perception among the Kashmiris has been generated by our political opponents. They always project us same way but I tell you that I love Kashmiris with the core of my heart. I hate Pakistan and if I could I want to destroy it.
It is Pakistan that is an enemy of Kashmiris. We ruled the state for three years and you tell me where we harassed the Muslim brethren. In New Delhi BJP is in rule for over four years and the biggest Confidence building Measures were launched by Modi led BJP.
He announced ceasefire in the holy month of Ramadhan to ensure that the Muslims in valley observe the month of fasting peacefully though he might have faced the severe criticism in country. But it was Pakistan which continued to fire upon borders and inciting the local militants to fail our ceasefire initiative in Kashmir.
So you can say who is enemy and who is friend of Kashmiris. I travel to nooks and corners of the valley and people hear me, greet me because they understood right and wrong now. I may tell you that 99 per cent people in Kashmir are Indians and it is one percent that hijacks the situation since they are funded and sponsored by Pakistan.
Lest talks about separatists. It is a well known fact that they have amassed huge wealth in all these years since they looted both Indian and Pakistan in the name of Kashmir issue. Their children are well settled in India and abroad but they always incite the children of common people to resort to stone pelting and pick guns and play the politics over that.
When the children of Syed Salahudin have right of government jobs and Syed Ali Shah Geelani’s children can work in India and elsewhere why shouldn’t they encourage the children of common people in same way.
Their fortunes have changed in last over few decades. They have villas. Bungalows, hotels and every comfort of life but nothing has changed for the common man except death and destruction in Kashmir.
You always talk against separatists and Pakistan?
Pakistan is the biggest killer of Kashmiris. He killed over one lakh people in Jammu and Kashmir after supporting gun culture in valley of which 80000 are Muslims.
He never let our Muslim brethren in valley and in Jammu border areas to live in peace and always back militants to foment trouble in state. They even support the separatists in Kashmir who looted both India and Pakistan. Whenever we extended our hand of friendship they back stabbed us.
Even you see our former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee who tried every effort to ensure peace with Pakistan. Mark my words when the fear of gun will be over in Kashmir the people will drag those separatists to Lal Chowk and beat them in full public glare.
When you talk about Vajpayee he is still respected in Kashmir for his outstanding initiatives with Pakistani and Kashmiris to resolve the Kashmir problem?
You know he was our man. He belonged to BJP and he was the one who went to Pakistan in bus and in return we got Kargil from the country. He invited Musharaf to Agra for dialogue and on the back they attacked our parliament.
Even Prime minster Narender Modi invited Nawaz Shareif to his oath taking ceremony and went to Pakistan but they attacked us in Pathankote.
What is the solution to the problem?
See, in Pakistan it is army and ISI ruling the roost. The elected government even the recent one led by Imran Khan are puppets.
They dance on the tunes of ISI and Army. In Pakistan for common people situation is very tough though they are as good as Indians. As long the shops of terrorism run by people like Masood Azhar, Hafiz Sayeed are open and backed by army and ISI the situation will be same and poor people will continue to die.
Even I warn the separatist in Kashmir who have looted both India and Pakistan to mend their ways or they will not be pardoned.
Courtesy: The Legitimate.