Jammu: Leaders of Hurriyat and mainstream parties in Jammu and Kashmir, religious preachers and clerics have used their influence to get the children of ordinary Kashmiris killed while none of them lost their own to terrorism, Governor Satya Pal Malik said on Tuesday.
Alleging that "affluent and powerful" sections have crushed the dreams of the youths in Kashmir and destroyed their lives, he appealed to the people to understand the truth and join the Centre's efforts to usher peace and progress in the state. Their own children are studying abroad and are well settled. But to the children of commoners, they show the "way to 'jannat' (paradise) get them killed. All this has been happening here", Malik said addressing the seventh convocation of Shri Mata Vaishno Devi University in Katra town.
"Politicians, bureaucrats, affluent and powerful have crushed the dreams of the youth and destroyed their lives. The society leaders, religious preachers, Moulvis, Hurriyat and mainstream parties have used their influence to get the children of ordinary Kashmiris killed. None of them have lost their own child and nobody from their families joined terrorism," he said.
Malik, who is known for his candid remarks, said that after joining as Governor, "I have not taken input from the intelligence agencies. They are not telling the truth to Delhi or us."
"I directly talked to 150 to 200 youth and tried to identify those in colleges and universities who do not stand up for the national anthem. I talked to them and those in the age group of 25 to 30 years, whose dreams have been crushed, are misled and are angry... they do not want Hurriyat, us or Delhi government or autonomy because they were shown that the way to paradise is by getting martyred," he said. The governor said he told such youth that they already have a paradise in Kashmir.
"I want to tell the people of Kashmir and the youth to understand the truth. You have beautiful place in the world to live.... Give it in the hands of Delhi which has opened its treasure for you. We are not going to take it (the place) anywhere. Come forward and be part of the new phase and tread the path of progress and development," the governor said.
The governor said 22,000 Kashmiri youth are outside the state for education and accused the politicians of neglecting the needs of people of Jammu and Kashmir.
"Why do they have to go outside for education? It is because we have not been able to provide standard education in the state over the last many decades. If the money which was pumped into Kashmir was used by politicians and bureaucrats in a proper manner, the roof of your homes would have been of gold," he said.
"I visited Amarnath shrine, a local youth was not having a sweater but the politicians of this place have houses everywhere from here to Delhi to Dubai. Name a hotel or investment business, they are everywhere," he said. Malik said he had sanctioned 53 degrees colleges last year and is opening 50 more colleges, including professional colleges, in the state shortly.
"I have upgraded 242 schools to higher secondary school overnight," he said. The governor said he told the misled youth that he will offer them "two paradises".
"I told them that it is your religious faith and I will not say anything about it. But I am ready to give you two paradises -- one in this life and the second in afterlife... there can be a discussion whether you get the paradise after martyrdom or not, but as Emperor Jehangir had rightly said that if there is a paradise on earth, it is in Kashmir.
"You have already one paradise and you can turn into a crown of the world in this life and secondly if you die as a true Muslim, you will get the promised paradise. That means you can get two paradises, one here and second after the death," Malik said.