Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik has courted a huge controversy by urging militants in the valley to kill local politicians who governed the state for years and ‘looted’ the wealth of Kashmiris.
Speaking at an event after the inaugurating Kargil-Ladakh Tourism Festival, Malik said, “If I was in charge of the country, I would have filed cases against these politicians and send them to jail and confiscated their wealth that they looted from poor people. These big families who have ruled Kashmir have unlimited wealth. They have one bungalow in Delhi, another in Dubai and London.”
He then went on to urge Kashmiri militants to stop killing innocent people and kill those politicians, who looted the state’s wealth. Malik said, “These boys, who are holding guns. Why are they killing unarmed and innocent people? They are killing SPOs (Special Police Officers). Why are they killing them? Kill those who have looted your country. Those who have looted the entire wealth of Kashmir. Why kill innocent people, kill corrupt politicians.”
His statement evoked angry reactions from local Kashmiri politicians. Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah tweeted, “Save this tweet – after today any mainstream politician or serving/retired bureaucrat killed in J&K has been murdered on the express orders of the Governor of J&K Satyapal Malik.”
Abdullah’s subsequent tweet read, “This man, ostensibly a responsible man occupying a constitutional position, tells militants to kill politicians perceived to be corrupt. Perhaps the man should find out about his own reputation in Delhi these days before sanctioning unlawful killings and kangaroo courts.”
Malik later said that his statement were made ‘in a fit of anger and frustration due to rampant corruption’ in Jammu and Kashmir. He told ANI, “As Governor, I should have not made such a comment, but my personal feeling is the same as I said. Many political leaders and big bureaucrats are steeped in corruption here.”
Responding to Abdullah’s tweet, Malik said that the former chief minister was a political juvenile, who tweeted on everything. ‘See the reaction to his tweets and you will find out,” he concluded.