In a bizarre turn of opinion, ex-IAS officer Shah Faesal, on Sunday, lauded Prime Minister Modi's 'Mann ki baat' saying that it was like '1.3 billion coming together as a family'. Faesal, who previously a harsh critic of the Modi government recently hailed the Centre's vaccination program, calling India a 'Jagat Guru'. Faesal who became first Kashmiri to top the Indian Civil Services Examination, had quit civil services and launched a political party - Jammu Kashmir People’s Movement (JKPM) in January 2019.
It is like 1.3 Billion people coming together as a family on a Sunday morning and each one being heard and spoken to, each one feeling counted.— Shah Faesal (@shahfaesal) January 31, 2021
My take away from this program: Communication can build solidarities and make a nation 'sound' like a family. https://t.co/H4FSzkge80
Faesal was detained at Delhi airport in August 2019 and was initially taken to a makeshift detention center at the Centaur Hotel in Srinagar, but was later shifted to his home and was placed house arrest. On August 12, the J&K administration had issued a Look-Out circular against Faesal, which was challenged by Faesal in the Delhi High Court as 'malafide exercise by the Centre'. The administration then slapped the PSA on him after former J&K Chief Ministers Omar and Farooq Abdullah, Mehbooba Mufti. Later in June 2020, Faesal along with PDP leaders Sartaj Madni and Peer Mansoor were released from detention.
After his release, Faesal resigned from the post of chief of Jammu & Kashmir People's Movement (JKPM) which led to rumours that he was set to rejoin government service. Recently, he has maintained radio silence, apart from retweeting Health ministry's guidelines. He also has issued a clarification on his name being dragged in the family dispute of former JNUSU VC Shehla Rashid - who was also part of JKPM.
Previously, while resigning from the civil services on January 9, 2019, Faesel wrote a scathing Facebook post stating, "To protest against the unabated killings in Kashmir and lack of any sincere reach-out from the Union government; the marginalization and invisiblisation of around 200 million Indian Muslims at the hands of Hindutva forces reducing them to second-class citizens; insidious attacks on the special identity of the J&K state and growing culture of intolerance and hate in the mainland India in the name of hyper-nationalism, I have decided to resign from IAS".