SRINAGAR, May 23 (Agencies): Former Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik on Saturday said
that National Conference leader Omar Abdullah and PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti had
refused to take part in panchayat elections in J&K under Pakistan’s pressure.
Malik said he broke protocol and went to both the leaders after Prime Minister
Narendra Modi said that panchayat elections will be held in the Union Territory.
However, the two former chief ministers had boycotted due to pressure from Pakistan.
“Militants also threatened yet elections were held successfully,” he added.
The 2018 polls to the local bodies had witnessed poor participation with two major
regional political parties – the National Conference (NC) and the Peoples Democratic
Party (PDP) – boycotting it. Worth mentioning that it was before the abrogation of
provisions of Article 370 and bifurcation of the state into union territories in August last
Commenting on recent attacks on the security forces in Jammu and Kashmir, Malik said
during his tenure as governor people felt comfortable and the anger was low.
“When I was the Jammu and Kashmir Governor, I opened the Raj Bhavan for everyone.
All my advisors were tasked to hear people’s complaints once a week. 95,000 complaints
were received by my office, I resolved 93,000 of them before coming to Goa. People felt
comfortable because of this, they felt it was their government. Thus, anger was low,”
Malik told news agency.
Malik also highlighted that he focused on the ‘outreach and development programme’ in Jammu and Kashmir during his tenure as governor.