SRINAGAR: After his "PoK belongs to Pakistan" remark last week, National Conference chief Farooq Abdullah on Wednesday made another controversial statement saying Pakistan was "not weak and not wearing bangles to allow India to take that part of Jammu and Kashmir under its occupation".
Addressing party workers in Uri area of north Kashmir's Baramulla district, the former chief minister said, "How long shall we keep saying that (PoK) is our part? It (PoK) is not their father's share. That (PoK) is Pakistan and this (J-K) is India."
He said 70 years have "passed but they (India) could not get it (PoK)".
"Today, they (India) claim it is our part. So take it (PoK), we are also saying please take it (from Pakistan). We will also see. They (Pakistan) are not weak and are not wearing bangles. They too have atom bomb. Before we think about war, we should think how we will live as humans," Abdullah said.
The Lok Sabha member from Srinagar had raked up controversy last week when he said that PoK belongs to Pakistan and it won't change even if the two countries fight wars against each other.
"I tell them in plain terms not only the people of India, but also to the world that the part (of J-K) which is with Pakistan (PoK) belongs to Pakistan and this side to India.
This won't change. Let them fight how many wars they want to. This won't change," he had said. His comments drew the ire of the BJP and a case was also filed against him in Bihar.
"A case has been filed against me. That too by a Muslim. May God protect him. Look at his situation, he does not know Kashmir. He does not know our situation. They (Pakistan) drop a bomb, common people and soldiers die here (in Kashmir) and when a bomb is dropped from here, our people and soldiers also die there (PoK). Till when would this storm continue? Till when would the blood of innocents continue to flow," he told his party workers.
He said he hoped a day would come when people would move freely across the Line of Control (LoC).
"A day will come when you will cross the Line of Control (LoC) in such a manner as if going from one house to another. Have belief on this that such a day will come and without that, there would be no peace in this country," he said.
Reacting to Abdullah's statement, Congress spokesperson R P N Singh said in Delhi that Jammu and Kashmir is an integral part of India and will always remain so.
"Jammu and Kashmir is an integral part of India and we do not any certificate from any person on this," he said.
The NC president also said the time had come to start "reversing all central laws that were extended to the state after 1953 in continuation of the spirit of the state's unique political arrangement with the rest of the country".
He said the "erosion of the state's autonomy is the genesis of the political problem in Jammu and Kashmir and created a sense of disenchantment and disillusionment among people".
"The restoration of autonomy to J-K is non-negotiable," he asserted.
The former chief minister sought to remind Prime Minister Narendra Modi of his Independence Day speech where he underlined the need to embrace the people of Kashmir.
"Modi should now take concrete steps to engage with the people of Kashmir with full dignity and respect for their sentiments in a sustained effort to resolve the Kashmir issue."