This ‘undeclared emergency’ more dangerous than 1975: Omar Abdullah

Former J&K chief minister also says BJP is fine with dynasty politics as long as not directed against it

Omar Abdullah speaks to the press in Srinagar (photo: PTI)
Omar Abdullah speaks to the press in Srinagar (photo: PTI)


National Conference (NC) vice-president Omar Abdullah on Friday said there was an "undeclared emergency" in the country and it was in more danger than during the Emergency of 1975.

"The usual complaint is that what we are going through is a worse phase than the Emergency. The only difference is that (former prime minister) Indira Gandhi declared it an Emergency. Today, the situation is like an emergency, but, it is not called an emergency," Abdullah told reporters in Srinagar when asked to comment on Union defence minister Rajnath Singh's statement on the issue.

The former Jammu & Kashmir chief minister said democracy was in greater danger today than during the Emergency in 1975. "Tell me, how much freedom do you enjoy to report the truth?... Today, democracy is in more danger compared to those times. Indira had the courage to hold elections then. She did not arrest anyone before the elections.

"Look at what is happening today. Wherever the BJP feels danger, candidates are arrested through some agencies. If this is not emergency, then release the opposition leaders and see whether the people support them or not," he said.

On Prime Minister Narendra Modi's barb on dynastic politics directed at the NC, J&K People's Democratic Party and the Congress, the NC leader said, "He (PM) rakes up these issues when he comes here. We wait for his programmes so that he says something new."

Abdullah said Modi, who has been in power for the last 10 years, only talks about parivarwad (dynastic politics). "The BJP is not opposed to families in politics. They are only opposed to those families who are opposed to the BJP," he said.

"If you see the distribution of their mandates this time, almost one-fifth of it belongs to political families. The BJP has given tickets to the families of its leaders. If that parivarwad is fine for the BJP, why do they have an objection when it comes to us? It is only because we oppose them. We have been opposing them and we will continue to oppose them," he said.

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