JAMMU National Conference (NC) president and former Chief Minister Farooq Abdullah on Thursday said if his party is voted to power in the upcoming assembly elections, regional autonomy will be granted in J&K within 30 days of his party forming the government.
A road-map in this regard has been drawn between 1996 and 2002 and the larger objective of regional autonomy will be politico-economic empowerment of all the regions of the State. He said the State assembly will also pass a resolution in the Assembly within 30 days, said Dr. Abdullah in Jammu.
NC moved a resolution for restoration of states autonomy on April 13, 1999 which was passed with a voice vote on June 26, 2000. The move triggered a major face off between Dr. Abdullahs government and the Centre. The resolution was rejected by the Parliament without having any discussion.
Farooqs remarks on regional autonomy came on a day when he welcomed former BJP leader Gagan Bhagat into his party. Mr. Bhagat was ex-MLA of the BJP from R.S. Pura.
A regional autonomy mechanism under overall superintendence of the State government will further strengthen the regional unity, which is imperative for singular entity of J&K, said Farooq.
The former Chief Minister said his party will work for equal development of Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh. All faiths living in the State, be it Hindus, Muslims, Christians and Sikhs will be treated equally, said Dr. Abdullah.
Expressing his gratitude to the National Conference leadership, Dr Gagan Bhagat said he will work in the party for further strengthening bonds of brotherhood and amity between various segments of society. He said he will humbly contribute in reaching out to the people, especially the marginalized sections, and work for their welfare and economic emancipation.
Welcoming Dr Gagan Bhagat into the party fold, Provincial President Devender Singh Rana described it as a reflection of deep urge among public spirited political activists to ensure a strong and stable government in Jammu and Kashmir. He said the people are realizing crucial importance of clear mandate to a single party for giving the state a responsive and transparent dispensation.
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