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PM Modis makes remarks on statehood, early Assembly polls in JK draw mixed reactions | News from India

PM Modis makes remarks on statehood, early Assembly polls in JK draw mixed reactions |  News from India
PM Modis makes remarks on statehood, early Assembly polls in JK draw mixed reactions |  News from India


Prime Minister Narendra Modi's announcement on Thursday that parliamentary elections in Jammu and Kashmir will be held soon and plans are afoot to restore its statehood in the near future has drawn mixed reactions.

While former Congress chief Ghulam Nabi Azad's Democratic Progressive Azad Party (DPAP) welcomed Modi's announcement, the main regional forces – the National Conference (NC) and the People's Democratic Party (PDP) – reacted cautiously.

“We welcome Prime Minister Modi Ji's statement on conducting elections and restoring statehood to J&K,” DPAP chief spokesperson Salman Nizami said in a statement.

He said the recent turnout of the people in the Lok Sabha elections indicates that the people are “hungry for change and are desperately waiting for the elected government”.

“This is a long-standing desire and demand of the population. The government must also ensure peace and smooth conduct of elections to meet the aspirations of citizens,” Nizami added.

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NC chief spokesperson Tanvir Sadiq said the Election Commission of India (ECI) should follow the Supreme Court's timetable for conducting the Assembly polls.

“Just to let you know, the ECI must follow the election timetable set by the Supreme Court, while the government's sole responsibility is to ensure a peaceful election atmosphere,” Sadiq said in a post on X.

In December last year, while delivering its verdict on a series of pleas challenging the Centre's August 5, 2019 decision to abrogate Article 370, the Supreme Court had ordered the ECI to hold elections in Jammu and Kashmir by September 30 this year.

Following PM Modi's assurance on restoration of statehood to JK, the NC chief spokesperson said the people of the Union Territory (UT) have heard that it will soon be restored for four years now.

“As for statehood, we've heard it will be restored 'soon' more than 20 times in four years. Spoiler: “soon” is still far from close,” Sadiq said.

PDP chief spokesperson Suhail Bukhari also said that the people of JK had heard about the conduct of the assembly elections and the restoration of the state over the past few years, but they would not believe it than when this would happen.

“We’ve been hearing this for five years. We will believe it when it happens. They talk about elections and statehood as if they are doing us a favor by granting us our democratic rights,” Bukhari said.

Prime Minister Modi on Thursday said that assembly elections would be held soon in Jammu and Kashmir and plans were afoot to restore the statehood of the UT in the near future.

On his first visit to the Valley after becoming Prime Minister for the third consecutive term, Modi highlighted the importance of allowing the people of Jammu and Kashmir to elect their representatives to the assembly.

In his speech at a rally at SKICC 'Empower Youth, Transform J&K', he congratulated the people for their active participation in the Lok Sabha elections and expressed the need for them to choose their local leaders in the upcoming assembly elections .

“The people of Jammu and Kashmir participated in the Lok Sabha elections in large numbers and broke the record of the last 35 years. You deserve to be congratulated for that…

“Now is the time for the people of Jammu and Kashmir to choose their own local representatives. For this, preparations are underway for the holding of parliamentary elections,” he said.

Further, Modi assured the people that the day was approaching when Jammu and Kashmir would regain its statehood.




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