New Delhi: Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Farooq Abdullah on Friday accused ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) of creating rift between different religions in wake of forthcoming Lok Sabha elections 2019. The National Conference (NC) leader also claimed that Muslims and minorities are feeling threatened  in India and Prime Minister Narendra Modi must come forward to clarify that this nation belong to all.

“I think we’re facing tragedies. It’s unfortunate that we’ve a situation where war is looming on our heads. We want peace and understanding between people. Unfortunately in this election ruling party is creating a rift between various religions and it’s a tragedy for this country,” said Farooq Abdullah while speaking to reporters today.

He added,”Muslims and minorities feel threatened. I think PM should make it very clear that this nation doesn’t belong to one party or one sect of people. He should make it very clear that it belongs to all of u and &we’ve to live in peace and harmony with each other.”

His statement comes days after two Kashmiri dry fruit sellers were assaulted by a group of saffron-clad men in broad daylight in Lucknow on Wednesday.  While one of them escaped after some heckling and beating, the other can be seen cornered by the two men, who constantly berate him for being a Kashmiri. “Why are you hitting him?”, asks a passerby in the video, to which one of the attackers responds with, “He’s a Kashmiri.”

A similar incident was reported from Uttar Pradesh’s Muzaffarnagar too where a Muslim youth was brutally thrashed by alleged BJP, Bajrang Dal workers for criticising government over job cuts.  Besides, they also declared him a ‘terrorist’.

Reacting over the incident, AIMIM chief Asaduddin Owaisi said,”BJP workers know that they cannot defend Modi’s development track record. So the only thing they can do is call someone an ‘aatankwaadi’ (terrorist) and beat them up.”