Apni Party seeks PM, HM intervention over delimitation commission’s draft report
Jammu, Feb 19: Jammu and Kashmir Apni Party president Mohammad Altaf Bukhari on Saturday expressed hope that Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah would pay attention to the “voices of concern” over the delimitation commission draft proposal.
He also sought the resignation of the five parliamentarians from Jammu and Kashmir – three National Conference and two BJP members — for their alleged failure to safeguard the interests of the people despite being the associate members of the commission.
The Delimitation Commission, in its draft report, has proposed an overhaul of Assembly and Lok Sabha constituencies in Jammu and Kashmir, triggering massive protests in the Union territory. The draft report was circulated on February 04 to the associate members who had submitted their objections on February 14.
“We are hopeful that after the elections in five states, the prime minister and the home minister, on first priority, will pay their attention to the voices of concern over the draft proposal of the delimitation commission so that a catastrophe, injustice and disenfranchisement of vast majority of voters is stopped and a message conveyed to the people that their voices matter,” Bukhari, a former minister, told reporters here.
Dismissing the draft proposal as “disempowerment of the public”, Bukhari said the report needs to be withdrawn in the interest of the people and the country.
“In the constitution of India, we have equal rights…the interest of the people remains supreme and no party is supreme over the security of the country,” he said.
Criticising the five MPs from J&K, the Apni Party leader said, “They were supposed to represent the people instead of their parties, but they failed to represent the interests of the people of J&K.”
He accused the Delimitation Commission of ignoring the national security aspect by disempowering the people, especially in the border areas.
By this draft proposal, Bukhari alleged that an attempt was made to ensure regional and communal divide, but said the party is thankful to the public that they are not “buying” it.
“We have not rejected the report because one region was given additional six seats and another only one, but the way the exercise should have taken place was not done,” he said.
In an apparent reference to the reports about the merger of some parts of Rajouri and Poonch districts with the Anantnag Lok Sabha constituency, he said “it looks that they have a plan to implement Dixon Plan of 1951 to make America happy or give practical shape to some generals behind operation Tupac (of Pakistan).”
Owen Dixon, the UN Representative who came to the subcontinent pursuant to the Security Council’s 1950 resolution on the Kashmir dispute, had assigned Ladakh to India, the Northern Areas and Pakistan-administered-Kashmir (PaK) to Pakistan, split Jammu between the two, and envisaged a plebiscite in the Kashmir Valley.
The plan popularly known as “Dixon plan” was rejected by India and even by the then prime minister (after 1953, the post was called chief minister) of Jammu and Kashmir Sheikh Abdullah.
Bukhari said he had no hesitation in saying that the report was made keeping in mind the interests of the BJP, ignoring the security of the country as many border constituencies like Suchetgarh either vanished or merged in such a way which triggered resentment among the border population.
“I would have no objection if the reports had safeguarded the interests of the country,” he said.
Asked if he believed that the report was made at the behest of the RSS as alleged by some parties, he said there are “invisible forces” operating in Jammu and Kashmir.
Responding to a question about the filing of objections by both NC and BJP to the commission and NC’s assertion that it will move to the court against it, he said “I am deceiving my people when I say I will go to the court of law because there is no provision to challenge the report. We are challenging this report in the people’s court,” he said.