New Delhi: “Politics is not bad but politicians can be bad,” said former J-K chief minister Farooq Abdullah said at an event here. Adding, he said, “Many of us join politics for service and many of us join politics for making money. God doesn’t live in temples, mosques or gurudwaras, he lives in people and if you serve people you are serving God.” Elaborating on the role of elections in each successive election in the country, Abdullah, who was addressing an event on Thursday, said, “Since Independence, each election has divided India instead of uniting it. We fight for temples and mosques. We don’t fight for people. We tell lies as we fear that if we’re honest, we won’t win but we’re wrong.” (Also read: Farooq Abdullah Heckled Before Eid Namaaz)

Later in the day, while addressing another event in the national capital, Abdullah reportedly claimed that the democracy of Mahatma Gandhi and Jawahar Lal Nehru had ceased to exist. Addressing the audience, he said, “Every election that has been held in this nation has divided us and we continue to be divided. Where is the democracy anymore that Gandhi preached us or which Nehru spoke of? India is going through a very difficult phase.”

He called for a change in the country and said, “There is the fear in Kashmiri mind and the young mind that they have no place in this India. How do I convince them that they have a place, when I see people lynching people or when I see just because of your religion you are targeted. How do I convince them? We need to wake up. If you can’t wake up there will be no India, it will fall apart.”

Earlier, Abdullah said his party wouldn’t participate in the coming panchayat elections unless the conflict regarding Article 35 A was resolved. NC chief Abdullah said that until the Centre and the state government cleared its stand with regard to Article 35 A and took concrete steps for the protection of the same inside the court.