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APMCC blames NC, Omar Govt for Kounsar Nag Yatra controversy
Akoul | 05 Aug 2014

All Parties Migrants Co-ordination Committee (APMCC), the organisers of Kounsar Nag Yatra for Kashmiri Pandits from Kashmir side, today directly blamed National Conference and Omar Abdullah Government besides some mischief mongers among separatists, mainstream political parties, media and intellegentia for creating unnecessary controversy over Kashmiri Pandits pilgrimage to Kounsar Nag Yatra known as Kramsaras Tirtha (VishnuPaad) yatra among Kashmiri Pandits to create communal disturbances and a wedge between the two communities of Kashmir with an eye on the forthcoming elections in the state.

Addressing the first media conference in Jammu after their yatra was banned by the state government even after clearing it earlier, the leaders of APMCC Vinod Pandit, Chairman, King Bharati, National Spokesperson and Advocate Arun Kandroo, Gen Secy, said that the controversy regarding the yatra was created by the National Conference MLC, Dr Basheer Ahmed Veeri who deliberately linked the yatra with that of the Reasi Yatra even though they had nothing to do with it besides the number was mischievously increased from 40 (Forty) to 4000 (four thousand) and facilitated the floating of so called Save Kounsar Naag Front (SKF) where it was directly said that Kashmir belongs to Muslims only to rake up the emotions in Kashmir and initiate an anti-KP wave with an eye on the forthcoming elections adding it was a disturbing trend setting bad precedents.

They cautioned the people of Kashmir from playing into the hands of NC who were using them as cannon fodder to fight the elections using communal card.

Vinod Pandit, Chairman said that they had informed the district administration one and a half month before about their yatra and that there will be around 40 yatries only after which the district administration issued instructions to other departments to facilitate the trial yatra and later the final yatra.

He said that at no point of time had they claimed hundreds or thousands of yatries as even during Kheerbawani mela getting 4000 Kashmiri Pandits together was a tough task and it could have never been possible for a yatra like Kounsar Nag.

He said that figure of 4000 was attached deliberately even by some national dailies to create commotion which led to present situation creating not only a wedge between the communities but also fear psychosis that KPs will be harmed if they return to their places of residence as the attack on minority picket was a proof of the same.

Addressing the media King Bharati, Senior Journalist and National Spokesperson of APMCC said that it was a calculated mischief and the entire conspiracy was hatched by someone somewhere to create trouble for the Kashmiri Pandits who wanted to return by inciting the local people against them with clear political motives.

He also asked Congress party to make their stand clear as their own members and ministers were issuing contradictory statements regarding the yatra.

Bharati questioned the wisdom of those opposing the yatra of 40 people once a year saying if a visit for two hours by 40 Kashmiri Pandits can pollute the area how would the government, the separatists and some intellectual type politicians justify that declaring Kounsar Nag as round the year tourist destination, would preserve the ecology of the area adding since the government, separatists, politicians and intellectuals have accepted that it was a tourist destination they have only ensured that this pristine lake is ruined the same way that they did to Gulmarg, Pehalgam and Dal Lake.

He said that common Kashmiri has been befooled by some vested interests by hiding the fact and inciting them against Kashmiri Pandits who are equal state subjects like them which has only exposed the so called secular myth of Kashmiriyat as it was clear these people are against Kashmiri Pandits and not pollution any more.

He also questioned the wisdom of those saying APMCC was going to build a temple there asking them whether they have seen any temple on a glacier?

He made it clear that they had no plans to do any such activity but take around 25 people along to revive the age old tradition of KPs to go to Kounsar Nag and offer water to their ancestors and come back adding his father alongwith his 10 associates was a regular pilgrim to this place upto 1990.

Advocate Arun Kandroo said that the opponents of Kashmiri Pandits going to Kounsar Nag citing pollution as a concern forget that for the past 25 years there has been a wanton loot of the green wealth in Kashmir which was ignored as they are actually against Kashmiri Pandits returning back than the concerns of ecological balance.

He said Pandits have been going there since times immemorial which was evident from the records of Nilmata Purana, Raj Tarangni, famous British writer Aurel Stein adding even Pt Jawahar Lal Nehru alongwith his sister Vijay Laxmi Pandit had visited the lake during Bakshi Ghulam Mohammad's regime.

He called for strong action against those who incited people and indulged in violence feeding false information to common masses and asked the separatists, politicians, and the government to make their stand clear on the return of Kashmiri Pandits and stop playing double games with Kashmiris.

The leaders also strongly condemned the attitude of J&K Government for stopping the Kounsar Nag Yatra even after clearing it earlier under pressure and to keep anti-KP lobby happy adding the government and its ministers have acted in most irresponsible manner by declaring it a tourist destination giving clear signals that the entire move was against Kashmiri Pandits and not against ecological concerns.

Pandits also took a strong note of the separatists and opponents of the yatra for openly saying it was Muslim Kashmir adding why were they adopting double standards and challenging yatras, and pilgrimages and on the other hand saying Pandits are welcome to Kashmir.

The leaders also warned that the irresponsible attitude of some mischief mongers has exposed them to grave threat to life adding if anything happens to anyone among APMCC leadership the state and the central governments will be directly responsible for it.

They said the attack by militants on minority security picket in Tral area was enough proof and appreciated the local police for timely intervention and wisdom in foiling the attack.

They said their organisations was in the fore front to save cultural heritage of Kashmir and working on ground level to help Kashmiri Pandits return to their original homes but by targeting APMCC the Civil society, separatists and the mainstream politicians including the government were trying to prevent their return which exposes their tall claims of composite culture and secularism.

The prominent APMCC activists present during the press conference include TK Zutshi, Vimarsh Koul, Virender Pandita and Ravinder Ji,