Restore Art-370, Statehood To J&K: Farooq Tells GoI

Dr Farooq Abdullah | File Photo

Srinagar: National Conference president and Member Parliament Farooq Abdullah Monday said Centre should restore Article 370, and statehood to Jammu and Kashmir which were protecting rights of people.

“We are seeking restoration of Article 370 and statehood to Jammu and Kashmir, which were protecting rights of people here. The August 5, 2019 decision has impacted all regions of J&K. It was because of Article 370 that farmers were not committing suicide here because these laws were protecting them,” Abdullah told reporters here.

“These laws (Article 370, 35-A were not for Farooq but for every citizen of Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh.”

Reacting to Union Home Minister Amit Shah’s claims that J&K is on the path of development since Article 370 was abrogated, Abdullah said, “He (Amit Shah) should listen to speech of Ghulam Nabi Azad which he made in the Rajya Sabha where he said how J&K was far ahead in development than Gujarat before August 5. We are now moving backwards.”

The Union Home Minister has said in the Parliament, “We were asked what we do about promises made during abrogation of Article 370. It has been 17 months since the abrogation and you are demanding an account for it. Did you bring the account of what you did for 70 years? Had you worked properly, you need not have asked us.”

Speaking about recent DDC polls, the Home Minister said: “Nobody, not even our rivals can say that there was fraud or unrest during the election (DDC). Everyone voted fearlessly and peacefully. 51% votes were cast in the Panchayat elections. Jinhone Dhara 370 waapis laane ke aadhar par chunav lada tha wo saaf ho gaye saaf (Those who had fought the elections based on the issue of bringing back Article 370 have lost.)”

Farooq Abdullah also claimed discrepancies in District Development Council elections. “See what happened in Budgam. In Shopian, our people were locked to ensure victory for others. But we will continue our fight against wrong doings.”

About Sajad Lone-led Peoples Conference parting ways with PAGD, he said, “Sajad Lone may have certain compulsions. I can’t comment on that. We can’t stop anyone from leaving PAGD. We are not fighting for power but for certain elements that want to divide the nation on the basis of religion.”

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