Kashmir was never a part of Pakistan and would never be: Farooq Abdullah

Kadapa: National Conference leader and former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Farooq Abdullah on Tuesday called for good relations with neighbouring countries, saying this alone could ensure development and prosperity of both the countries.

“If we are friendly with our neighbour and if the neighbour is friendly with us, both will progress and if we live in enmity, the progress of both will come to a halt,” said Farooq while addressing an election rally of the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) here.

He slammed BJP for using Ram Temple and “attack on Pakistan” as poll stunts.

“They are saying today they attacked Pakistan. They don’t say any other thing. They think people are fools and will believe them. We Indians want to strengthen India and at the same time we want to see our neighbours remain strong and terrorism is eliminated,” he said.

He reminded BJP of the statement of former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee that friends can be changed, but neighbours can never be changed.

“Today I want to tell this to BJP leaders who think they are strengthening the country. Country will strengthen when Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs and Christians get strengthened, when they are able to live life of dignity and when their children have jobs,” he said.

Stating that unity in diversity is the beauty of India, Farooq voiced concern over the attempts being made to create hatred among various communities.

“Jammu and Kashmir became part of India because of Gandhiji. Today’s India is not India of Gandhiji,” he said.

He also claimed that YSR Congress Party President Y.S. Jaganmohan Reddy had met him after the death of his father and then Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy and told him that if Congress makes him the chief minister, he is ready to give Rs 1,500 crore.

He wondered from where Jagan got so much money. “He doesn’t have any treasure. It is definitely people’s money. If such a person seeks vote with a promise to brighten your future, don’t believe him. Such a person will destroy your future,” said Farooq and appealed to people to support the TDP to enable to continue the welfare and development programmes.

Chief Minister and TDP president N. Chandrababu Naidu said Muslims had no safety and security during Modi regime. He said that voting for Jaganmohan Reddy would mean voting for Narendra Modi.

Simultaneous elections to 175-member Andhra Assembly and all 25 Lok Sabha seats in the state are scheduled on April 11.