New Delhi, Jan 1: PDP President Mehbooba Mufti praised Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi for his approach to investment proposals, a transcript of her speech made public after some remarks triggered a row showed.
Mehbooba while referring to her interaction with a Muslim businessman who spoke of Modi's quick response to a business proposal had also said at the National Integration Council(NIC) meeting that such actions were necessary to reach out to minorities who will in turn respond positively.
According to the transcript of the deliberations of the meeting released by the Union Home Ministry on its official website, the PDP leader focussed on the need for giving more opportunities for minorities including reservation in government jobs.
“I recall once I was in Chennai and I met some one, a Muslim businessman, and he told me that he had gone to see Gujarat Chief Minister (Narendra Modi), and he said I was very impressed. I had an appointment with him regarding some business deal and he had got all the officers there, around him.
“They did not take even ten minutes and he got his job done. So, I mean, people, minorities, Muslims they are looking forward some kind, some kind of step forward, some kind of reaching out, which I think, we are missing.
“I mean to say that if all political parties reach out to minorities they will respond positively,” the transcript quoted Mehbooba as saying at the NIC meeting held in Delhi in September 2011.
The document appeared to counter the denials by Mehbooba who had asked the Ministry of Home Affairs to release the complete transcript of the NIC deliberations.
The PDP leader's purported comments at the NIC meeting first came in public domain when BJP leader Sushma Swaraj said even Mehbooba, who had always been opposed to the BJP, had praised Modi at the NIC meeting.
Sushma had made the remarks on the concluding day of Modi's ‘Sadhbhavna' three-day fast in Ahmedabad in September.
Mehbooba hit back and described Sushma's claim as baseless and untrue. “I have never praised Modi nor recommended any businessman to him for favour. It is all rubbish,” she had said.
Mehbooba, according to the transcript, complimented the UPA for bringing in Sachhar Committee report and said such report would help in “redefining the minorities of India, especially, the Muslims, who are facing huge social and economic problems.”
The PDP President expressed her feeling that “the soul of India is incomplete without Kashmir.
“We may fight, we may kill each other, we may do whatever, but I think Kashmir is core of Indian nationhood and we just cannot ignore it, we cannot just, you know wish it away,” she said while pointing out that none had been prosecuted for fake encounters in the state so far.
She also made a reference to to 2,700 unmarked graves in Kashmir Valley said these graves were were not in Somalia. “No, sir, they are in Gandhi's India. In Gandhi's Kashmir where he saw the light.”.
The PDP leader also made some critical comments about the Army, referring to some controversies surrounding some of its senior officers.
She said while Army was a great institution “but you have people (in Army) who are involved in others scams, you have a General who fiddles with his birth certificate. You have people in army who are involved in many bad deals (Adarsh) and there are some army guys involved in fake encounters too.”