Hours after Peoples' Democratic Party chief Mehooba Mufti spoke at her first press conference since being released from 14 months of detention, the BJP on Friday accused her of making "seditious remarks". "We will raise the national flag only once our state flag is back. The national flag is here only because of this (the Jammu and Kashmir) flag and constitution. We are linked to the rest of the country because of this flag," Ms Mufti, former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister, said on Friday, prompting criticism from the BJP and the Congress.
Hitting out at the PDP president over the comments, J&K BJP president Ravinder Raina told reporters: "I request Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha to take note of (the) seditious remarks of Mehbooba Mufti, book her for the seditious act and put her behind bars".
"We will sacrifice every drop of our blood for our flag, country and motherland. Jammu and Kashmir is an integral part of our country, so only one flag can be hoisted... and that is the national flag," he said, news agency PTI reported.
On centre's move last year to scrap J&K's special status last year, he said no decision taken by the government can be reversed. "I warn leaders like Mehbooba Mufti not to instigate the people of Kashmir. We will not allow anyone to disturb peace, normalcy and brotherhood. In case anything wrong happens, she will have to face the consequences," the J&K BJP chief added.
On Friday, Ms Mufti launched a scatching attack on centre as she said her party would not "abandon the constitutional battle" to reclaim special status withdrawn by the centre in a contentious decision taken in August last year. "A robber may be mighty but he has to return the stolen goods. They demolished the constitution... Parliament had no power to take away special status," she told reporters, criticising the central government.
"Those who feel we will abandon Kashmir are mistaken," she said, adding that she would not contest any election until Article 370 is restored. "I have contested elections under our own constitution. How can I contest elections when that constitution has been abolished," she said.
The PDP chief's remarks were also criticised by the Congress. "Such statements are intolerable and unacceptable in any society," the Jammu and Kashmir Pradesh Congress Committee's chief spokesperson Ravinder Sharma said.
Reacting to her statement, Mr Sharma said it was highly provocative and irresponsible and has hurt sentiments of people.
Political leaders from J&K, including Ms Mufti, Farooq Abdullah and his son Omar, were detained for months as part of measures taken by the centre to prevent backlash against announcing its decision to withdraw special status and bifurcate the former state into two union territories on August 5, 2019.
Ms Mufti was released last week while the Abdullahs were released in March.
(With inputs from PTI)