A delegation of Opposition Parties from Jammu & Kashmir meeting the Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi, in New Delhi on August 22, 2016.

J&K leaders respond positively, want dialogue process to continue.

The People’s Alliance for Gupkar Declaration (PAGD) was an umbrella political grouping in Kashmir. It would struggle quietly and within the bounds of the Constitution for a full restoration of Article 370. They told Prime Minister Narendra Modi during a meeting on Thursday.

“We told the Prime Minister that we don’t stand with. But we won’t take law into our own hands. We’ll fight this in court. We also told the PM that there’s been a breach of trust between J&K and Centre and it’s the Centre’s duty to restore the trust…” former chief minister Omar Abdullah told reporters after the meeting. He requested the PM to reverse some decisions that were not in the interest of J&K.

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Positive side of the leaders

“People don’t like the UT (Union Territory) status. They want full statehood with J&K’s own team restored as well,” Abdullah said. He informed both Modi and home minister Amit Shah that work on elections and restoring statehood should start soon.

Mehbooba Mufti said she conveyed the problems faced by the people of J&K after August 5, 2019. “I conveyed to the PM that people are hopeless and angry. They feel embarrassed. I told them that August 5, 2019 decisions are unconstitutional, illegal and immoral. It was not acceptable to the people of J&K,” Mufti said.

Her party would strive for the restoration of Article 370 even if it takes years, she said. “Just like the BJP strived for 70 years to revoke Article 370, J&K PDP would constitutionally, democratically, peacefully fight to restore it,” she said. Mufti also welcomed the India-Pakistan ceasefire and appealed for the restart of cross-LoC trade.

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People’s Conference leader Sajad Lone said there was emotional joining at the meeting. “We came out quite positive and hopefully there will be some delivery for the people of J&K in the medium run as well as the short run,” he said.

CPI (M) leader and spokesperson of PAGD, Muhammad Yusuf Tarigami, said the PM. Home minister had heard out their concerns and demands. “But we did not get any concrete assurances from them as of now,” he said.

J&K Apni Party leader Altaf Bukhari said that all leaders expected that the delimitation process would be completed in an honest manner.

Nobody made any emotional remarks in the meeting. Everyone talked within the Constitution of India respecting the integrity and sovereignty of the nation…” Bukhari said.

Former deputy chief minister of J&K, Nirmal Singh, said there was agreement on peace in J&K. The PM pleased to all the leaders that there would be peace only when everyone works together,” Singh said. Former speaker of the J&K assembly, Kavinder Gupta, said the time had come for the political process to begin.

It should not even be thought that it will ever come back,” Gupta said. The BJP’s J&K president, Ravinder Raina, said the PM assured all leaders that everyone would work together for the improvement of the Union Territory.

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