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January 23, 2023 11:18 pm

In Jammu, Rahul Gandhi Promises Fight for J&K’s Statehood

Jammu- On the 129th day of Bharat Jodo Yatra, Congress leader and Member Parliament Rahul Gandhi Monday said that demand for statehood is Jammu and Kashmir’s biggest issue and the Congress party will use “full power” to get it restored.

“I have covered more than 3000 kilometers. During the yatra in Jammu and Kashmir, I have met a cross section of people from the last few days and let me tell you that during my conversation with them, I was informed that statehood for J&K is the biggest issue along with the highest level of unemployment in the country,” Rahul said, addressing a gathering at Satwari Chowk in Jammu. He told the gathering that the Congress party will fully support “you and your statehood demand.”

“To restore the statehood, we (Congress) will use our full power to get back the statehood as soon as possible,” Rahul said. “Statehood is your (people of J&K) biggest issue. There is no big issue as big as statehood. Your right has been snatched. Cross section of people from J&K during this yatra raised their concerns.”

Rahul said: “People told me, which I am sharing with you, that their voices are not being heard by the administration. Earlier native people had a say in administration and trade but now the entire trade is being run by outsiders and people of J&K watch them sitting haplessly.”

He further said that Jammu and Kashmir has the highest level of unemployment in the country.

“Youngsters aspire to become engineers, doctors and lawyers but they find they cannot because of lack of opportunities,” he said.

On Kashmir Pandits

Rahul Gandhi said that Pandits are facing injustice at the hands of the government and asked Jammu and Kashmir Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha to apologise to the community for telling the prime minister’s package employees that they should not seek alms.

He said that a Kashmiri Pandit delegation called on him during his Bharat Jodo Yatra in Samba district earlier in the day and briefed him about their various issues including “targeted killings” by terrorists and the resultant protest by those employed under the prime minister’s package.

“Injustice is being meted out to Kashmir Pandits by this government…this morning, a delegation of Kashmiri Pandits met me and briefed me about their issues. I was surprised to know that their delegation was told by the lieutenant governor that they should not seek alms.”

Rahul said he wanted to tell the lieutenant governor that they are not demanding alms but are seeking their rights. “You (LG) should seek forgiveness from them (Pandits).”

Earlier, Rahul said that yatra has been started from Kanyakumari and “we learned a lot during this period. Every state teaches us a lot and it.”

“We tried to raise issues of demonization, wrong GST, farmer bills, China’s incursion, unemployment in the parliament but we were not allowed and our mikes were turned off, it’s now only us but media should also contribute in protecting democracy,” he said, adding, “I wish in-stead of talking about bollywood stars they should raise issues of unemployment, price rise etc, which is affecting the poor population of nation.”

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