Shah Faesal reached out to NSA before he quit party; open to IAS return

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Shah Faesal reached out to NSA before he quit party; open to IAS return


Bureaucrat-turned-politician Shah Faesal, who left the party he himself founded, quit only after making contact with top officials in the Union government. Faesal had a talk with National Security Adviser (NSA) Ajit Doval before informing his party colleagues in the Jammu & Kashmir People’s Movement (JKPM) that he was leaving, HT has learnt.

Faesal, 37, who hits the headlines in 2009, when he became the first person from Kashmir to top the Indian Administrative Services exam, acknowledged that he has been in touch with officials in New Delhi, although he declined to specify details.

“There has been a lot of speculation about the conversations I’m having with people in the government. I have been a member of IAS, and it’s nothing strange if I’m meeting people in the government,” he said.

“I have to live and work here and this is perfectly normal,” he added.

The NSA was not available for comment.

Faesal suggested that he is not opposed to rejoining the service, and there is talk that he could be reinstated.

Faesal, who once promised to be the voice of Kashmir’s young people has come a long way. His views, too, have changed. “I think we need to understand that in 1949 national consensus was about incorporating Article 370 and the 2019 national consensus is about scrapping it. We have to understand the mood of the nation and come to terms with the reality.”

Early in 2019, Faesal announced his resignation from the IAS and became a vocal critic of the government. Jammu & Kashmir was stripped of its special status in August last year, and at the time, he tweeted: “Kashmir will need a long, sustained non-violent political mass movement for the restoration of political rights. Abolition of Art 370 has finished the mainstream. Constitutionalists are gone. So you can either be a stooge or a separatist now. No shades of grey.”

He has now deleted all his tweets. Asked to explain the stooge-and-separatist comment , he said: “I was talking about the political grey zone in which electoral politics operated

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