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Home / India / Omar Abdullah lashes out at Delhi’s meat ban during Navratri

Omar Abdullah lashes out at Delhi’s meat ban during Navratri

He asked whether it would be fine to ban non-Muslims from eating in public in Jammu and Kashmir during Ramazan
Omar Abdullah.
Omar Abdullah.
File photo

Muzaffar Raina   |   Srinagar   |   Published 06.04.22, 01:24 AM

Former chief minister Omar Abdullah on Tuesday asked whether it would be fine to ban non-Muslims from eating in public in Jammu and Kashmir during Ramazan, arguing that if majoritarianism was good in one part of the country it must be good in another.

Omar, who usually stays away from divisive politics, was reacting to a ban imposed on meat shops by South Delhi Municipal Corporation mayor Mukkesh Suryaan for the ongoing Navratri period.

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“During Ramzan we don’t eat between sunrise & sunset. I suppose it’s OK if we ban every non-Muslim resident or tourist from eating in public, especially in the Muslim dominated areas. If majoritarianism is right for South Delhi, it has to be right for J&K,” Omar tweeted.

Most eateries in the Valley voluntarily remain shut from dawn to dusk during Ramazan as most people observe a daytime fast during the holy month. There is, however, no bar on tourists from eating in public.

Muslims make up about 70 per cent of Jammu and Kashmir’s population.

In the Valley, they are roughly 97 per cent of the population.

While Omar’s comment seemed intended solely to make a point, its tenor was still unusual for a member of the fiercely secular Abdullah family — a pointer how the BJP ecosystem’s divisive politics is getting to even the saner voices in the Valley.

Omar’s father Farooq Abdullah, who famously walked 3km barefoot to the Vaishno Devi temple in Jammu to perform aarti in 2011, last year told an interviewer it was terrible to be a Muslim in India and he regretted that India was becoming communal.

“They are dividing people, (pitting) Muslims against Hindus and against other religions,” he had said.

The Kashmir Files, a film exploring the flight of Kashmiri Pandits from the Valley and the circumstances behind it, has deepened the religious divide in Kashmir.

A spate of militant attacks has taken place on non-Muslims in the past three days, injuring a Pandit chemist, Bal Kishan, and four non-Kashmiris.

Kishan’s family had never migrated out of Kashmir. Dozens of their Muslim neighbours visited their home on Tuesday to express sympathy. Some condemned the militant attack.



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