Days after the former Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir Mehbooba Mufti batted for separatist Yasin Malik's release, Congress leader PC Chacko said that the JKLF chief's 'courage must be appreciated'.
He said: "PDP can call anything. Congress party has never supported separatism. Using the force and asking people to surrender is BJP style, that will not work here. His ideology, his action, we have never ever supported that, even when the BJP was supporting it, they were trying to police them also, Congress has taken a stand never support separatist group.
But today Pragya Singh Thakur can contest an election, who is an accused person, and to Yasin Malik, Delhi is asking at a gun-point to surrender. Anyone with self-respect will react the way Mr Yasin Malik has reacted. Even though we do not support his action, the courage he has shown must be appreciated. India is a democracy, we may have differences with anyone but threatening is not the answer to deal with anyone."
WATCH: Mehbooba Mufti Holds A March In Support Of Separatist Yasin Malik, Argues "They've Released Sadhvi Pragya Who Is Fit And Fine But Arresting Ailing Malik"
Earlier PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti had called for the 'immediate release' of JKLF leader Yasin Malik, contrasting the separatist leader's case with that of Malegaon blast accused, BJP's Bhopal candidate Sadhvi Pragya.
Holding a march for the Hurriyat leader, the PDP chief had demanded for the ban on Jamaat-e-Islami JK and JKLF that was imposed by the Centre in March be lifted. Furthermore, Mufti highlighted how a 'fit and fine' Pragya has been released but an unwell Malik is facing an arrest. She said, "Yasin Malik has been arrested, he is very ill. They have released Sadhvi Pragya who is fit and fine but arresting ailing Yasin Malik. They have released Sadhvi Pragya who is fit and fine but arrested ailing Yasin Malik. We are protesting against these muscular policies, they have to stop torturing family of terrorists."
Her comments came days after the NIA secured JKLF chief Yasin Malik's custody for 12 days, and he was shifted to Delhi's Tihar Jail from Jammu's Kot Balwal jail where he had been lodged last month. Malik is facing investigation related to the terror funding case lodged against him by the NIA.