SRINAGAR: National Conference (NC) president Farooq Abdullah today attacked the Centre and the state government over delay in release of relief and rehabilitation package to the victims of last year's floods, even after passage of one year of the natural calamity.
He alleged that the central government has adopted "double standards" in granting relief and rehabilitation package to flood victims of Uttarkhand and that of Jammu and Kashmir, which could have far reaching implications on the psyche of the people, as they feel "let down and discriminated".
Abdullah said the entire amount of the relief package sought by Uttarakhand government, after devastating floods in Kedarnath, was released within a month and half of the natural disaster there, while flood victims in J-K were yet to see any signs of a relief and rehabilitation package from the Government of India.
"The double standards between the response of the central government in Uttarakhand and the lack of one in J-K was glaring and tragic. Why the double standards between Uttarakhand and Kashmir? Uttarakhand received the entire amount of the relief package sought by the State Government there within the first month and a half of the natural calamity there.
"On the contrary, a year has come to pass since the September floods and J-K is yet to see any signs of a relief and rehabilitation package from the Government of India," Abdullah said here.
The NC president said the glaring difference between the treatment meted out to Uttarakhand and that exhibited in Kashmir was extremely unfortunate and could have far reaching implications on the psyche of the people.
"The people (here) feel let down and discriminated against and they are completely justified to feel that way," Abdullah said.
He said his party has been fiercely advocating a comprehensive relief and rehabilitation package from the central government and the previous NC-led government had sought a Rs 44,000 crore package from the Centre.
"Unfortunately this package was sabotaged by the PDP and their Finance Minister opposed it on the floor of the Legislative Assembly - calling it an 'ad-hoc package'. If PDP had a problem with the package that was proposed, what stopped them from proposing a new package after they came to power in an alliance with the BJP?
"Neither did they propose a new package, nor did they follow-up on the package proposed by the previous government. Till now we have seen little beyond customary lip service. This indifference of the Central Government is dismaying for every citizen of the State," he said.
Abdullah said the PDP-BJP coalition was scripting cruel jokes regarding the flood package which add insult to the injuries of the affected people.
"We keep hearing of imaginary, make-belief packages every few days but these announcements turn out to be fake alarms. This has added insult to the injuries of the flood victims - they are now at the receiving end of one cruel joke after another scripted by the PDP-BJP State Government,"