Will keep Article 370 issue alive, asserts NC’s Omar : The Tribune India

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Will keep Article 370 issue alive, asserts NC’s Omar

Will keep Article 370 issue alive, asserts NC’s Omar

National Conference vice-president Omar Abdullah in Srinagar. PTI



PTI

Srinagar, April 13

National Conference (NC) leader Omar Abdullah on Saturday said the Supreme Court upholding the abrogation of Article 370 does not close the issue and his party will keep it alive till a dispensation comes at the Centre that is willing to discuss the restoration of special status to J&K.

“This government will not remain forever. There is no power on earth that can keep PM (Narendra) Modi and the BJP in office in perpetuity. Why would you assume that no government will come in future that will be unwilling to talk to us on Article 370,” Abdullah said during an interview.

Top court verdict unfortunate

  • According to National Conference vice-president Omar Abdullah, the Supreme Court’s verdict on petitions challenging the abrogation of the Article 370 is unfortunate.
  • “I believe there will be a government in future that will be happy to engage with us on the special status of J&K and until that comes, we will keep our struggle alive,” he adds.

Abdullah, who is contesting the Lok Sabha polls from north Kashmir Baramulla constituency, said the Supreme Court verdict on petitions challenging abrogation of the Article 370 was unfortunate. “I would like to believe that there will be a government in future that will be happy to engage with us on our core issues of the special status of J&K and until that comes, we will keep our struggle alive,” he said.

He claimed that several opposition parties were also on the same page. The former chief minister said just like the BJP did not stop talking about the abrogation of Article 370 even when it had two Lok Sabha members in the 1984 elections, his party will continue to talk about the restoration of the special status.

Asked about the “silence” of the Congress on the demand for restoration of Article 370, he said while he was disappointed, he would not blame his INDIA bloc ally. “I have always maintained that J&K’s special status is the legacy of the Congress party. It was not an individual who gave it, it was the government that gave it

On the recent protests in the Ladakh region, he said the people of Ladakh couldn’t be blamed for it. “Unfortunately, when this UT issue was raised, some people were fanning the flames... I used to go and tell people to be careful what you ask for because once you get it, you will regret it and you will not find a point of return. They felt that UT was the answer to all their problems...” he added.

Omar said Manmohan Sigh was a true statesman and that Narendra Modi, at some stage, would have to start thinking about the kind of legacy he left behind.

He also said it was obvious that the Centre was using the probe agencies under it against the leaders of the opposition parties. “When 95% of the cases that are being investigated or charged by the Enforcement Directorate are against (opposition ) political leaders and political parties, that tells you. At some point, the PM will start thinking about what sort of a legacy he wants to leave,” he said.

Asked if he thinks more opposition leaders will be targeted by the Central agencies in case PM Modi secures a third term, Omar said, “A national newspaper did a front page story about the people who join the BJP suddenly find themselves exonerated. So, this is a reality, it is not something that we are speculating. But it is fine. It is one of the many tools that the BJP has its disposal. So be it.”

#Article 370 #Kashmir #Omar Abdullah #Srinagar #Supreme Court


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