SEPARATIST’s PHOTO ROW: CDPO suspended, probe ordered

Opp demands apology from Govt

13/10/2017



SRINAGAR, Oct 12: The overnment today suspended an officer and ordered a probe in connection with a picture of jailed separatist leader Asiya Andrabi appearing along with Indian women achievers in a banner on 'Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao' campaign.
Shamima, the Child Development Project Officer (CDPO) of Breng block in Anantnag district, has been placed under suspension and an inquiry has been ordered into the incident, Deputy Commissioner of Anantnag Mohammad Yunus Malik said.
"The CDPO in question has committed a grievous error of judgement by including Asiya Andrabi in the list of distinguished women achievers of the country.
"The person responsible for this goof up has been immediately placed under suspension and an inquiry has been ordered against her for the conduct," said Social Welfare Minister Sajad Lone.
The state government yesterday faced a major embarrassment after the picture of Andrabi, the pro-Pakistan chief of 'Dukhtaran-e-Millat' (daughters of the nation) organisation, appeared in the banner along with Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti, Mother Teresa, Indira Gandhi, Lata Mangeshkar, tennis star Sania Mirza and Puducherry Lt Governor Kiran Bedi.
The poster, aimed at highlighting the women achievers of the country, was hoisted at a function held to promote girl education in south Kashmir's Kokernag area yesterday.
Lone said Andrabi was not a role model for women in Jammu and Kashmir or anywhere else in the world.
"The department unambiguously states that Ms Asiya Andrabi is not a role model -- neither for women of Jammu and Kashmir nor elsewhere in the world. She at best is an aberration, representing the aimless fringe afflicting societies across the world," the minister said in a statement posted on his Twitter handle.
Lone said the publicity wing of the department works in a decentralised format and CDPOs devise their own publicity, which does not require approval of higher authorities.
Andrabi, who is currently detained under Public Safety Act, openly advocates for merger of Jammu and Kashmir with Pakistan.
She has several cases registered against her including some for hoisting Pakistani flag on August 14 and March 23 -- the Independence Day and National Day of Pakistan, respectively.
Opposition Congress slammed the Mehbooba Mufti government over the development.
"This is total failure of the PDP-BJP government and it should apologise for hurting the nationalist and religious sentiments of the countrymen and insulting our national leaders besides taking stern action to check such incidents," State Congress spokesperson Ravinder Sharma said.
Sharma wondered if the act was a part of deliberate attempts to appease the separatist element in the state.
Panthers Party also criticised the government over it.
However, The Jammu and Kashmir Panthers Party and Congress today hit out at the state government on the issue of separatist leader Asiya Andrabi's photo featuring in a poster on 'Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao' campaign.
In a major embarrassment for the Jammu and Kashmir government, the banner aimed at highlighting the women achievers of the country featured Andrabi as an achiever alongside Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti and other personalities.
After a lot of criticism, the state government today suspended the child development project officer (CDPO) of Anantnag's Breng block.
While the Congress demanded an apology from the PDP-BJP government over the issue, the JKNPP called for dismissal of the government for "glorification of secessionists".
State Congress spokesperson Ravinder Sharma said, "This is total failure of the PDP-BJP government and it should apologise for hurting the nationalist and religious sentiments of the countrymen and insulting our national leaders besides taking stern action to check such incidents".
Sharma also said if these acts were part of the deliberate attempts to appease the separatist element in the state.
JKNPP chief Harsh Dev said the government had to "accept the responsibility for glorification of such secessionists and anti-nationals and step down for such an abhorable, anti-national and seditious exhibition .
The government had lost its moral, legal and constitutional right to continue in office, he said.

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