Omar Abdullah To Kashmiris Before Polls

“We are not ones who incite youngsters for stone pelting and disrupt peace.”

Attempting to make the upcoming Lok Sabha polls about the BJP-led central government’s decision to abrogate Article 370 and downgrade Jammu and Kashmir to Union territory status, senior National Conference leader and former chief minister Omar Abdullah has asked people not to vote for his party if they are happy with the move.

“In this election, we have to answer just one question: Whether the decision taken on August 5, 2019, was right or wrong,” said Mr Abdullah.

Addressing a meeting of his party workers  on Wednesday, the National Conference leader – who spent over 200 days in detention after the repealing of Article 370 of the Constitution, which granted special status to Jammu and Kashmir – said, “Don’t vote for the National Conference if you feel the decision was right. Don’t vote for us if this decision has changed your lives for the better.”

Stating that people have to send a message through their vote that the decision is not acceptable to them, Mr Abdullah added, “Vote for us if you feel deceived and there is a sense of injustice after August 5, 2019”.

Through the Jammu And Kashmir Reorganisation Act, 2019, the erstwhile state was also bifurcated and the Union territory of Ladakh was carved out. Ladakh is now witnessing protests for statehood and constitutional guarantees, for jobs, land and other privileges under sixth  schedule, that were earlier protected under article 370. 

Mr Abdullah asked his partymen that it’s only through their vote they can send a message and not by resorting to protests or disturbing law and order situation. 

“We are not ones who incite youngsters for stone pelting and disrupt peace. We are the people who have sacrificed lives for maintaining peace” said Mr Abdullah.

National conference is contesting on three seats Srinagar, Baramulla and Anantnag and leaving two seats to Congress in Jammu. 

PDP which is also part of INDIA bloc has announced to go solo and blamed NC for not leaving any option for the party to contest polls in alliance. PDP was demanding NC to leave Anantnag seat for the party where Mehbooba Mufti is likely to contest. 

Jammu and Kashmir will vote in the Lok Sabha in five phases, beginning April 19 and ending on May 20. The results will be declared on June 4.