Slamming the Congress' continued fearmongering about Kashmir, Jammu-Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik, on Monday has said that Rahul Gandhi has made an unending issue of his invitation to visit Kashmir. He further said that he had invited them to dispel their claims of violence in Kashmir. Once they had made conditions to their visit, Malik said that he had rescinded the invitation. He also said that he had left to the administration to allow their visit.
"They (Congress ) has made the issue of my invitation an unending business. At a time when they were claiming that people are dying and bullets are being shot, I told them to visit and see the situation for themselves. For five days they did not respond. Then they said, 'I will meet with the jailed people, the detained leaders, and the Army.' I said that these conditions were not acceptable to me and I withdraw my invitation. Then I said if the administration allows then you could visit," he said, speaking to ANI.
Malik also highlighted that inspite of officials requesting Opposition leaders to not visit, they proceeded to visit. He also talked about the real threat Kashmir is already dealing with from Pakistan. Slamming Rahul Gandhi's statements claiming - ' All is not normal in Kashmir', he said that these statements will be misused by Pakistan. He asked the Opposition to support Kashmir as it was a matter of national importance.
"Now when they prepared to visit Kashmir, the administration had told them in advance that their visit will inconvenience locals. We are already battling with the situation here. The threat from Pakistan which is real is already being faced by us. Hence, they were told that it would not be appropriate for them to visit the Valley now. The utterances which they are saying from Delhi will be misused by Pakistan. That is what happened. Imran Khan has misused their statements in his tweets and Pakistan TV too has misused it. I wish to say that this a national issue and they should cooperate with the Centre. They should help us in restoring peace in Kashmir," he added.
Busting Congress' lie regarding Kashmir, Republic TV, on Monday, has accessed visuals of residents playing football in the northern Kashmir district- Baramulla. Visuals also show normal traffic movement in the streets. Normalcy is seen being restored in the Valley of three weeks of restrictions imposed due to security reasons. The Centre had initially tightened the security in Jammu-Kashmir after the abrogation of article 370. But in the successive weeks, the Centre has been easing restrictions in a phased manner in certain parts of the Valley.
After Opposition leaders' delegation was detained at Srinagar airport, Congress' official Twitter handle, on Saturday, has released a video capturing the conversation between Rahul Gandhi and the authorities at Srinagar. The video shows an irate Rahul Gandhi in claiming that he was invited by the Jammu-Kashmir governor. Surrounded by other leaders like Majeed Memon, Ghulam Nabi Azad, Gandhi goes on to question why they were not allowed to enter if the situation was normal, as stated by the government. He then goes on to say that they wish to visit any area and speak with a few residents.
But Srinagar authorities had stayed firm in their resolve and had asked the Opposition leaders to return back. On returning to Delhi, Rahul Gandhi continued to fearmonger about the ground reality of Kashmir. Speaking to reporters at Delhi airport, he said, "Some days ago I was invited by Governor to visit J&K. I accepted the invitation. We wanted to get a sense of what people are going through. But we weren't allowed beyond the airport. Press people with us were mishandled and beaten. It is clear that the situation in J&K isn't normal," as reported by ANI.
Meanwhile, Rahul Gandhi has been demanding to visit the Valley since restrictions were implemented in the state. Previously, Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik had offered to send him a 'plane' to visit the state so that he would stop fearmongering over it. In response, Rahul Gandhi explicitly stated that while he won't 'need an aircraft' but 'freedom' should be assured for him to travel and meet mainstream leaders and soldiers deployed in the valley. He also jumped at Pal's offer tweeting he would visit with a delegation of political leaders after parliament abrogated article 370 on August 5.