Defending JK’s special status won’t be easy in Parliament: Farooq

Defending JK’s special status won’t be easy in Parliament: Farooq

SRINAGAR: Protecting JK’s special status would be a tough challenge in the new Parliament dominated by the BJP, the National Conference (NC) said on Thursday soon after winning all the three parliamentary seats in Kashmir valley.
The NC had fought the elections on the plank of defending JK’s special status within the Indian Union, a status that is under attack from the Narendra Modi-led NDA government in New Delhi. President of the NC, Farooq Abdullah, who won the Srinagar parliament seat, said his party MPs will face a tough challenge in defending the special status of J&K in India’s Parliament.
“We know that Parliament won’t be easy for us. Their (BJP) aim is to divide Muslims and Hindus and to demolish Articles 370 and 35-A. We have to fight firmly as this country belongs to all,” Farooq said while talking to reporters.
NC vice president and former chief minister Omar Abdullah said that BJP’s anti-Article 370 statements helped it to win the elections, and this threat should not be taken lightly.
“We will have to fight with our full power to save the state’s special status,” he said.
Regarding the overall Kashmir situation, Farooq said he hoped that the new government in New Delhi would engage with Pakistan. He said his party will speak about the issues of killings, border shelling, encounters and use of pellets against people in Kashmir.
“My priority will be to work for the restoration of peace and dialogue between India and Pakistan. This is the way forward for the resolution of Kashmir issue,” he said.
Omar blamed the Congress for the NC’s defeat in Ladakh constituency. He said the Congress fielded two candidates, which did injustice with the people of Kargil.
He also predicted that nothing was going to change in the BJP’s second five-year term. However, he appealed to the BJP to “lessen the hardships of people of Kashmir”.
Omar said his party’s new representatives in Parliament were competent to defend the state’s special status. He said Parliament needed people like Akbar Lone, who won the Baramulla seat in north Kashmir, and Retired Justice Hasnain Masoodi, who had legal knowledge about Article 35A and 370.