SRINAGAR, July 26: With revocation of Jammu and Kashmir’s special status is set to complete one year, political parties have apparently maintained silence on this issue instead seeking restoration of statehood to J&K.
On last August 5, Narendra Modi-led government at the Centre abrogated Article 370, which guaranteed special status of the erstwhile state. At the same time, the Centre also bifurcated the state into two Union Territories, Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh.
However, all political parties in Jammu and Kashmir have been demanding restoration of statehood to J&K.
National Conference patron and former chief minister Farooq Abdullah on Sunday called for restoration of its statehood and hoped the Supreme Court would render justice by striking down the repeal of Article 370 provisions.
He said that his party would continue to contest the changes through all democratic means.
Similarly, Bhartiya Janta Party said they would protest after August 5 for restoration of statehood to Jammu and Kashmir.
“Some people want to divide Jammu and Kashmir but we won’t let that happen. BJP General Secretary Ram Madhav has said that statehood should return to Jammu and Kashmir. The BJP leaders and workers will protest for return of statehood to Jammu and Kashmir after August 5. We hope the government will consider it,” senior BJP leader from J&K and former MLC Sofi Yusuf told news agency Kashmir Indepth News Service (KINS).
Yusuf said BJP has been strengthening its base in Kashmir. “We are hopeful to win over 20 seats in assembly elections after delimitation,” he added.
Madhav on the question of restoring full statehood to Jammu & Kashmir has said that his party supports it. He said, “BJP’s Jammu & Kashmir unit is of the opinion that statehood should be given back when the time is favourable. We want J&K to be restored to a full state’s status. Home Minister Amit Shah himself said while granting UT status that work would be done to get full statehood back very soon. The Assembly is yet to be constituted and delimitation for UT is pending.”
Senior Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad has also demanded restoration of statehood followed by assembly elections to J&K during his meeting with Prime Minister Narinder Modi on Friday evening.
Jammu and Kashmir Apni Party (JKAP) president Altaf Bukhari demanded that statehood of J&K should be restored on August 5, when it was split last year into two Union Territories.
Bukhari said the party will continue its fight for the restoration of statehood which was snatched unilaterally last year by BJP government. “The special status of Jammu and Kashmir was unilaterally snatched on August 5, 2019 followed by strict curbs for months. We will not give up. JKAP will continue its fight for restoration of statehood”, he said.