SRINAGAR – As former PDP leader Altaf Bukhari announced a new political party here on Sunday, the National Conference said it is pretty clear that the Centre is contriving to prop up yet another formation in Jammu and Kashmir to “serve its interests at the cost of democracy”.
Jammu and Kashmir Pradesh Congress Committee (JKPCC) president G A Mir also termed the new political party as “an offshoot of the saffron party”.
In a statement, NC spokesperson Imran Nabi Dar said it is becoming clear that the continued detention of legitimate and tall political voices of J-K is not about law and order, but it is purely political in nature.
He said the emergence of the new political formation is a “handiwork of those who want to blunt the true representative voices of J-K”. The move is aimed to ditch genuine political aspirations of the people of J-K, he said.
“The way things are unfolding here in J-K, it is pretty clear that the Central government in connivance with few is contriving to prop up yet another formation in J-K to serve its interests at the cost of democracy and political probity,” Dar said.
“They want to fill the political vacuum of Kashmir with those who parrot what New Delhi wants them to. It is therefore safe to call this new formation as Delhi”s party and nothing else,” he said.
Bukhari, 60, announced the formation of the Jammu and Kashmir Apni Party (JKAP) at his residence and was flanked by former MLAs and senior leaders of political parties like the National Conference (NC), the PDP, the Congress and the BJP, besides some former Independent legislators.
He was elected president of the JKAP unanimously.
Dar said the NC was not against having new parties in J&K, but the timing and the constituent elements of the newly-formed outfit “is what frets common people who are privy to everything”.
“A new political amalgamation of strange bed fellows is being pushed down the throats by crowing out genuine representatives of people – former chief ministers, sitting member of Parliament, former law makers. It is no less than a mockery,” he said.
He claimed that the members who have joined the new group are the same who pulled down Farooq Abdullah”s government in 1984 to cobble up with the Centre.
“It is crystal clear now, that the genuine and representative voices of J-K have been crowed out with a sole purpose to benefit few. New Delhi and BJP wants to give them time to poach people from the NC, the PDP and the Congress,” he said.
The JKPCC described the party as a “creation of various quarters, which have always been hell bent upon to create chaos and divisions in the political system of J-K”.
Mir said the political class of J-K was well aware as to how different quarters and government machinery had been used to impress various mainstream political leaders to join the new formation.
“As a result, some have succumbed to pressure and were made to join it. But, such pressure tactics won”t make any difference on the ground, rather it has exposed the motive behind it,” he said.
The JKPCC president urged the people of the union territory to rise to the occasion and expose such new and old formations to bring stability in the region.
BJP welcomes launch of Bukhari’s party, says people fed up of dynasty politics
The Jammu and Kashmir unit of BJP on Sunday welcomed the launch of new political party led by former state finance minister Altaf Bukhari and expressed hope that the outfit will work for the progress and development of the Union Territory.
BJP Kashmir’s media in-charge Manzoor Bhat in a statement said the people of Jammu and Kashmir were fed up of dynasty politics and sought change.
“We are hopeful that the new party will not deceive the people of J&K as the PDP, NC and Congress did for the last 70 years,” Bhat said, adding that they would jointly work for the development of the region.
“People are fed up of family and traditional politics in the valley and want to see a vibrant change,” he said further.
Bhat said the launch of JKAP will strengthen democracy in the region and pave the way for development and prosperity of the people of Jammu and Kashmir.
“We hope the party will act as a platform for people from all religions and castes,” he said, adding that the JKAP must not work for vote banks as the Mufti’s (Peoples Democratic Party) and Abdullah’s (National Conference) did for decades.
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