Srinagar: A year on, regional political parties are yet to resume their activities in Kashmir.
Parties said the government has put several leaders under house detention and imposed strict restrictions on their movement in Kashmir.
Post-August 5 last year, barring BJP no political party has resumed their activities in the valley.
While the BJP leaders celebrate the abrogation of article 370, none from the regional parties could hold any programmes in Kashmir.
National Conference (NC) claimed that the government has detained their district presidents which have hampered their functioning.
“The government is not allowing us any activity. We tried to hold a meet on August 5, which wasn’t allowed by the administration. BJP and Apni Party have been given free hand to hold political activities,” NC spokesperson Imran Nabi Dar told The Kashmir Monitor.
He said the party’s district presidents are under house detention and therefore they are handicapped to hold major programmes. “Our leadership should be freed so that they can consult people and hold programmes at the grassroots level,” Dar said.
Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) said party members are not been allowed to hold any event. “Political activity in Kashmir now means pandering to the government. We are not interested in such staged programmes. On August 4, I wrote a letter to Deputy Commissioner Kishtwar to hold a programme against the government’s move to abrogate Article 370. Next moment I and my district president were detained in a police station,” said former MLC and senior PDP leader Firdous Tak.
He said there can be no political activity unless the government accepts people’s opinions. “My detention was a message to the entire organization that the government will not allow any political activity. The government will have to allow dissent,” Tak said.
Earlier this year, the party had alleged that the government hadn’t allowed them to observe the death anniversary of PDP founder late Mufti Muhammad Sayeed.
Congress said the political process in Kashmir can take place only when the detained leaders are released.
“There are many leaders who are detained in their houses. The party can meet or devise any strategy only when the leadership is free to meet,” a senior Congress leader said.