Our Relations With Delhi Governed By Art 370: Omar

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‘Any attempt on this would be on our dead bodies’

SRINAGAR: Chief Minister, Omar Abdullah Wednesday castigated BJP leadership without naming them for raising the false boggy of revocation of Article 370 of the Constitution of India providing for special status to Jammu and Kashmir. He added that BJP has developed a trait to deceive the people on this issue as soon as elections draw nearer.

“We the people of Jammu and Kashmir categorically tell them that revocation of Article 370 is not possible at all and any attempt by anyone on this sensitive issue would be on our dead bodies”, he asserted and said that during the six and a half years tenure of BJP Government at the Centre, it has not even a single time talked about this issue. “BJP only raises the issue of Article 370 when elections are in sight”, he said and challenged this party to dare to touch Article 370 which has established Jammu and Kashmir relations with the Union of India. “You have to do it on our dead bodies”, he lamented and said that the National Conference and the Congress would foil all attempts to weaken the State-Central relations.

     Speaking at a function after inauguration of Banihal-Qazigund Railway Tunnel and Line by the Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh in presence of UPA Chairperson, Mrs. Sonia Gandhi, Governor, N. N. Vohra, Union Minister for Railways, Mallikarjun Kharge, Union Minister for Health, Ghulam Nabi Azad  besides others the Chief Minister said that the relations between Jammu and Kashmir and Union of India have been established through Article 370 by the then Prime Minister of Jammu and Kashmir Late Sher-i-Kashmir Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah and Prime Minister of India, Late Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru. He said NC and Congress would work jointly to further cement and strengthen these relations.

     Omar Abdullah said that there may be some differences on certain political issues between National Conference and Congress in the State but both parties are firm to strengthen the ties between Jammu and Kashmir and the Union of India through Article 370 and nurture the nationalist forces in the State. “We would work together to cultivate and strengthen the nationalism and nationalist forces”, he maintained and said that both these parties would not be browbeaten by any threat or challenge on this count.

    Stating that Article 370 has established Jammu and Kashmir relations with the Union of India constitutionally, the Chief Minister said that the 11.9 kilometre long tunnel across Pir Panchal to join Banihal of Jammu Division with the Qazigund of Kashmir Province, has established the physical relation of the State with the Country. “It has not only linked the areas and the regions but the hearts as well”, he said.

    The Chief Minister said that the linking of Banihal with Kashmir through railway has opened new vistas of tourism, trade and commerce besides enhancing opportunities of jobs and economic activities for the people living here. He said it will also open up this area for all round development. “Today is an historic occasion for the people of Jammu and Kashmir who had always thought of travelling across Pir Panchal through railway”, he said adding that in his childhood he also dreamt this dream.

    The Chief Minister expressed gratitude to Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh and Mrs. Sonia Gandhi for inaugurating the railway line and flagging of train from there. He described his travelling in the first train across Pir Panchal with Prime Minister and UPA Chairperson alongwith students of Banihal Higher Secondary School as an historic event in itself.

     Omar Abdullah predicting the return of UPA-3 in power at the Centre after general elections in 2014 and expressed the hope that both Prime Minister and UPA Chairperson would come again to the State to inaugurate the Banihal-Katra railway link to realise the dream of Late Mrs. Indira Gandhi to connect Jammu and Kashmir with the rest of the Country through railways. 

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