BJP leaders in Jammu and Kashmir have alleged that Independent legislator Engineer Rashid has links with the Pakistani establishment. They have asked Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed to make an investigation into the matter.
Rashid, who was recently beaten up by BJP MLAs inside the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly for hosting a beef party, is facing flak for his conflicting statements to the media.
While on the one hand he told a newspaper from the South that the separatists and militants were baying for his blood for being a lover of Indian democracy, on the other hand he told journalists in Srinagar that New Delhi has no moral right to rule over Jammu and Kashmir.
Rashid, however, is trying to divert the attention by strongly deriding the Bharatiya Janata Party government at the Centre over recent communal incidents in Dadri and Jammu.
The ruling People’s Democratic Party has hit back at Rashid by saying he was responsible for inciting communal sentimentd by hosting a beef party, which led to the Udhampur attack. Petrol bombs were hurled on the trucks of two Kashmiri drivers in Udhampur recently. A teenager Zahid Ahmad Bhat was killed in the incident.
“Zahid was killed and two other Kashmiri truckers were injured because Rashid provoked Jammu radicals to conduct the petrol bomb attack on their truck,” advisor to Mehbooba Mufti, Mansoor Ahmad told the media. Deputy Chief Minister and senior BJP leader Nirmal Singh has already accused Rashid of acting at the behest of Pakistani agencies to polarise the state on religious lines.
A senior BJP leader told this newspaper that Rashid has been in touch with the Pakistani establishment for several months, adding that the police has recorded some of his conversations with Pakistani leaders. “We have demanded that the government should probe his links with the Pakistani establishment and arrest him for sedition,” the leader said.
Rashid blamed CM Mufti for being under pressure from ally BJP and failing to arrest the main accused in the killing of Zahid.