Millennium Post

Cong demands restoration of statehood, early elections in J&K

Jammu: The Congress on Friday demanded restoration of statehood to Jammu and Kashmir, safeguards to jobs and property for the local people and release of all political leaders to facilitate early assembly polls in the erstwhile state.

A resolution in this regard was passed in an executive committee meeting of the Jammu and Kashmir Pradesh Congress Committee (JKPCC), chaired by senior party leaders Gulam Nabi Azad, Ambika Soni and Gulam Ahmed Mir, here. "We passed a unanimous resolution here demanding restoration of full statehood, protection to jobs and property rights to the people of J and K and release of all political leaders and workers to facilitate early assembly polls," Azad told reporters after the conclusion of the meeting.

He said Jammu and Kashmir is one of the oldest states and restoration of the statehood will do justice to its people.

"J and K is a border state, which shares borders with China and Pakistan. The BJP government should take on board the people of J and K and the northeast and not play with fire," Azad said.

The Congress expresses its deep solidarity with the people of J and K who underwent numerous kinds of curbs and curtailments of their civil rights and liberties during the past over five months after the abrogation of the special status to their state under Article 370 of the Constitution, he said.

"The erstwhile state was put into a state of undeclared emergency whereby all mainstream opposition leaders and activists were put to severe restrictions including detentions and some of them under the stringent provisions of law for undeclared periods," he said. "GoI hurt the self-esteem of the people by reducing status of J and K from statehood to a UT, a phenomena never happened in the 72 years of India's independence," he added. Azad said the party also expresses its grave concern over the continued escalation along the Indo-Pak border.

While condemning such actions of Pakistan against our soldiers and civilians in the strongest possible words, we urge the Centre to take all possible and urgent steps to prevent and check Pakistan from indulging in such mischiefs and misadventures on borders, he added.

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