Press Trust of india

Azad reaches Jammu; likely to launch his party in few days

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Jammu: Veteran Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad, who ended his more than five-decade-long association with the Congress last month, is likely to launch his party in the next couple of days.

“I am inviting the media tomorrow (Monday) before the launch of the party. I am here to meet workers and leaders,” Azad told reporters in a brief interaction at his residence here upon his arrival from Delhi.

A close aide of the former J&K chief minister has confirmed the news.

“He is having two back to back separate meetings with senior and second rung leaders later today,” he said, adding Azad is visiting Srinagar on September 27.

He said the name and the flag of the new party have been finalised and it is now a matter of a day or two before the new party becomes a reality on the political landscape of Jammu and Kashmir.

Azad, 73, quit Congress on August 26, terming the party “comprehensively destroyed”. He also lashed out at Rahul Gandhi for “demolishing” the party’s entire consultative mechanism.

Over two dozen prominent Congress leaders including former deputy chief minister Tara Chand, several former ministers and legislators also resigned from the Congress in support of Azad. Two former legislators, one each of the PDP and Apni party, also followed suit.

He has earlier spelt out that the top agendas of his party will be to restore Jammu and Kashmir’s statehood and protect the land and job rights of its residents.

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