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Unlike Jammu, situation in Kashmir alarming, not conducive for polls: Omar

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Says dissolution of the assembly will end horse trading, splitting of political parties, govt formation

Jammu, Jul 09: Reiterating his demand for dissolution of the Jammu and Kashmir Legislative Assembly, National Conference vice-president Omar Abdullah today said the situation in Kashmir is not conducive for polls.

“The National Conference has gone on record to demand the dissolution of the assembly. It is the cure for all the rumours about horse trading, splitting of political parties and government formation,” Abdullah told reporters here.

“We will contest the elections whenever they are held. The reality is that the situation in Jammu may be conducive for polls but the situation in Kashmir is very grave,” the former chief minister added.

The NC, Abdullah said, does not demand immediate elections as it understands that it will take time to create a conducive climate.

Speaking about the speculations about the BJP trying to form the government in the state again with rebel PDP MLAs, Abdullah said he would go by senior BJP leader Ram Madhav’s tweet wherein he denied the reports.

BJP general secretary Ram Madhav on Saturday said his party was for continuing with Governor’s rule in the state in the interest of peace, governance and development.

His comments came after Abdullah tweeted a news report that claimed “a big chunk of PDP MLAs are in touch with the BJP high command.”

Abdullah said the BJP’s state unit, however, was telling people otherwise.

“Let us see who is right and who is wrong,” he said.

When asked if the BJP had reached out to him for government formation, the NC leader replied in the negative.

He asserted his party was not indulging in horse trading and would not have any role in disintegration of the PDP.

Abdullah also rejected the BJP’s claim that the situation in the Valley had improved since the imposition of the Governor’s rule.

“A few days ago, three civilians were killed in the Kulgam district. I don’t see any improvement in the situation. The militant activities too haven’t gone down,” he said.

“May be sitting in Delhi they feel that the situation is improving, but I don’t think so sitting here in Kashmir,” he added.

He refused to comment on media speculation about the Islamic State gaining a foothold in Kashmir.

The NC leader said Governor N N Vohra should work to restore the peace that prevailed in the state during the tenure of his government.

“The atmosphere of brotherhood in the Jammu region, for which my government worked between 2009 and 2014, needs to be restored. There is a world of difference between the prevailing situation and that of 2014,” Abdullah said.

The situation, he added, had only worsened.

The NC leader blamed the erstwhile PDP-BJP government for the mess in the state.

“Today they are admitting that the government and Mehbooba Mufti as chief minister failed. This is what we were saying for three years. It was an inept government run by inefficient people,” he said.

The former chief minister said allegations of corruption against the ministers of the PDP-BJP government had come to light and his party would take them up with Vohra.

“Many people have reached out to us and levelled allegations of corruption against ministers of the previous government. All these will be taken up with the governor and we hope there will be a fair probe,” he said.

Abdullah asked the NC leaders and workers to reach out to the people across the state.

He asked them to generate awareness about the NC’s mission, which, he said, is not to come to power in the state but to steer it out of its problems, ensure equitable development in all regions and maintain brotherhood.

Earlier in his address at a day-long convention of NC Women Wing, Omar Abdullah targeted the BJP’s “hypocrisy” and “double-speak” of the ousted chief minister Mehbooba Muft, saying after three years opportunistic bonhomie they were now indulging in mud-slinging publicly.

He particularly wondered over the jibe of Mehbooba Mufti at the Prime Minister, seeking just one inch of his 56 inch chest for Kashmir, and asked what stopped her in seeking justice for Jammu and Kashmir during several visits of Narendra Modi to Jammu, Srinagar and Ladakh.

Instead, he said, the PDP chief went out of way in heaping praises on Modi. “We witnessed such praises coming in immense measure in the assembly as well,” he added.

Omar Abdullah also targeted BJP for crying hoarse over discrimination with Jammu and Ladakh during the past three years, asking why didn’t any of its members or ministers rake up these issues during their partnership with the PDP in the government.

For all this time, they including the Deputy Chief Minister preferred to be silent and now they were yelling the slogan of discrimination.

“Either there was something wrong in BJP’s three years silence or now they are trying to hoodwink the public opinion by believing them as fools,” he said, adding every BJP ministers used to shower praises on Mehbooba Mufti.

Lashing out at the PDP for blaming New Delhi of betrayal and conspiracy in dislodging Mehbooba government, the NC vice-president said the people of Kashmir were not ready to buy such arguments, which is evident from their total indifference over fall of the government.

“Not a single voice was raised or tear shed for dumping the PDP-led government,” he said, adding that the same is true about Jammu where people took no cognizance of the fall of BJP government.

In fact, he said the people were happy to see non-performing liability in the form of PDP-BJP government gone, he maintained.

Omar Abdullah also took a jibe over BJP chief Amit Shah’s remark about two Kashmir families and reminded him of the similar phraseology used by Narendra Modi during his campaigning in Srinagar in 2014.

“Will Amit Shah justify BJP’s alliance with one of the two families after stitching alliance with Mufti Mohammed Sayeed in 2044,” he asked saying sheer opportunism and lust for power brought to the duo, which they themselves called North Pole South Pole, together.

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