March 18, 2018

Kashmiri militants killed by Indian forces are 'martyrs', says PDP MLA

13 January 2018, 09:36 | Randall Craig

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Aijaz Ahmed Pir, a People's Democratic Party (PDP) MLA, courted controversy on Thursday when he said terrorism in the state of Jammu and Kashmir are martyrs.

Reacting to Mir's statement, BJP MP and Union Minister Mukhtar Abbas told ANI: "Terrorists and separatists are the enemies of Kashmir, Kashmiris, development and peace".

"There is a contradiction in the PDP, on one side they kill militants and on the other hand such a statement coming from the PDP MLA, this contradicts CM Mehbooba Mufti's assembly statement", senior national conference leader Akbar Lone said.

The PDP MLA's latest statement came a day after he asked the legislators in the Jammu and Kashmir assembly to not express happiness over the killings of Kashmiri militants.

When reporters pressed him on whether he believed that the terrorists were "brothers and martyrs", as he had said in the House, Mr Mir replied, "Of course".

Earlier on Wednesday, Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti gave a rousing speech in the state Assembly arguing that the violence in Kashmir can not be set right by the Centre alone, calling all stakeholders to come together to set it right through the political process.

"Terrorists, who are from Kashmir are martyrs".

"Militants who are from Kashmir are martyrs, they are our brothers, some of them are minors who don't even know what they are doing", Mir said while speaking to media persons outside the Assembly.

Mir also cautioned against glorifying the killing of militants. "We are thankful to the parents who are appealing to their wards to return from the path of militancy". "The PDP's ideology was that whenever any militant was killed, I would visit their families for condolences".

Aijaz sympathised with the security personnel killed in the state, saying, "We feel sad when our security forces are martyred as well". He also said that the children who have gone down the wrong track should be counselled and brought back.

"It is the PDP MLA who has said this".

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