Eid:Abdullah heckled for chanting 'Bharat maata ki jai'

Eid:Abdullah heckled for chanting 'Bharat maata ki jai'

Farooq Abdullah. PTI File Photo

National Conference (NC) president and Member Parliament Farooq Abdullah was on Wednesday heckled during Eid prayers at Hazratbal shrine in Srinagar apparently for chanting “Bharat maata ki jai” and “Jai Hind” while paying his tribute to Atal Bihari Vajpayee.

Before the prayers, as the Imam spoke about Article 35-A (State Subject Law), and octogenarian Abdullah walked in, people started booing at him and demanding his removal from the Masjid.

Dozens of youth could be seen disrupting the congregation in a video of the incident that has gone viral on social media. Protesting youth could be also seen hurling shoes and disrupting the congregation, forcing the NC patriarch to leave the prayer ground.

While sharing the video, Zulkarnian Banday, a facebook user wrote on his timeline: “Humiliated, disgraced and shamed. Pro-Indian politician of Kashmir Farooq Abdullah booed in Dargah Hazratbal. This is the man who represents India in Kashmir. Rest people know what his family did to Kashmir (sic).”

Hazratbal shrine, where Abdullah was heckled, is considered a traditional NC bastion. Abdullah made an emotional speech and raised slogans of "Bharat Mata ki Jai" at the end of the all-party prayer meeting for former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee on Monday in New Delhi.

While reacting to the incident, Abdullah, also a three-time chief minister of J&K, wondered why the issue was being blown out of proportion by a section of the media. “A politician, at times, has to face people’s anger. I only hope these misguided youths are counselled properly,” he said.

Later in the day, Abdullah said he was not a person to be cowed down. “Agar yeh samajhte hai ki ise azadi aayegi toh mein inko kehna chahta hun ki pehle begaari,beemari aur bhookmari se azadi pao (If the people want freedom, they should first get freedom from bonded labour, illness and a shortage of food),” ANI quoted him as saying.

Meanwhile, clashes erupted in several parts of Kashmir valley on Wednesday after congregational Eid prayers, leaving several protesters and a CRPF man injured.

Reports of clashes between protesters and security forces after the conclusion of congregational Eid prayers were received from south Kashmir’s Anantnag town and north Kashmir’s Sopore town.