A war of words broke out between mainstream and separatist parties on Monday over the Kashmir issue and the ramifications of shutdown politics.“Can [Hurriyat chairman Syed Ali] Geelani show me his reaction to the Pakistan Prime Minister who has repeated many times recently that Azadi (independence) is not an option for Kashmir. Hypocrisy is a Geelani trait,” National Conference leader Omar Abdullah wrote on Twitter.The former Chief Minister was hurt by Mr. Geelani’s comments on National Conference president Farooq Abdullah’s statement that Azadi was not a reality. “While Farooq Abdullah’s ancestors were engaged in Kashmir struggle, Geelani was fighting elections and aligning with the then Janata Party,” Mr. Abdullah said.A joint statement issued by Joint Resistance Leadership, comprising Mr. Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Yasin Malik took on both NC and ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for their remarks.‘Slaves of Nagpur’“The love for chair has completely blinded her [Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufit] and her ilk of opportunists to see what havoc they have wreaked upon Kashmir since their alliance with the BJP. People of Kashmir do not need the largesse of New Delhi to survive as Ms. Mufti suggests and are no beggars,” the statement said.Terming mainstream parties as “slaves of Nagpur”, a Hurriyat spokesman said, “It’s because of these people that our existence, identity, religion, culture and everything is on the verge of extinction.” He said while the NC “pushed Kashmir into a deep gorge, the PDP wants to bury us alive”.The separatists were irked by Ms. Mufti’s criticism of the business community on the shutdown politics on Sunday. “What have people achieved in the past 30 years by self-inflicting protests? An inch of land hasn’t moved. We close our shops and doors when somebody from New Delhi comes to Kashmir but afterwards we go to them asking for money,” she said.
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