"Politics based on religion, hatred is dangerous for democracy. Divisive politics poses biggest threat to the survival to democracy," senior NC leader and Minister for Finance Abdul Rahim Rather said at a public meeting at Sher-e-Kashmir Bhavan on Monday.
    
"Democracy is all about initiating a healthy debate and seeking mandate on a manifesto rather than vitiating the situation by exploiting religious and regional sentiments of the people," he said.
    
The Finance Minister expressed concern over the emergence of divisive forces, terming it a bad omen for democracy. Without naming any party, he exhorted the people to alienate both the individuals and their parties for perpetrating ‘myopic politics’.
    
He said that the call for Lok Sabha elections has been given and the preparations for it will begin soon, adding it will be the time when people will have to consciously choose whom to vote - "Those who believe in politics of exploiting religion or those above all these considerations".
    
Rather emphasized on secularism, socialism and democracy referring to the Preamble of the Constitution and said these ideals were the ‘foundations of National Conference’ nurtured by former chief minister Sheikh Mohammed Abdullah.
    
"These cherished ideals are the pillars of strong foundations of National Conference nurtured by Sher-e-Kashmir Sheikh Mohammed Abdullah," Rather said, hoping that secularism will continue to guide the nation.
    
Rather asked those believing in sectarian politics to understand the real meaning of democracy and seek mandate on the basis of their manifesto, irrespective of religious and regional aspirations.

(Agencies)

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