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For waylaying relief material in Srinagar
Jammu & Kashmir is witnessing the biggest crisis it has seen in modern times. Most of Srinagar has been flooded for days. People who have lived there throughout their lives are finding it hard to recognise the areas that they were born and grew up in. One would think that in the face of such a calamity, the last thing that would be on anyone’s mind would be petty politics.

When Chief Minister Omar Abdullah first said that the episode of stone pelting of rescuers was part of a deliberate ploy by anti-social elements, he was thought to be making excuses for people’s anger. But what Hurriyat Conference leader Yasin Malik did on 3 September gives plenty of substance to Abdullah’s charge.

Malik was caught on camera waylaying supplies from a boat that was engaged in relief work. His argument was that he had the first right to carry out relief operations in that area. This is probably an instance of reaching the absolute rock bottom of petty politics. That such an incident should happen in a region that is experiencing so much misery is almost surreal. There is plenty of time for playing politics in the future, but in the middle of a disaster, it’s appalling.