Restore statehood, hold elections in J&K: Harsh Dev

Seeking early restoration of statehood to J&K and installation of an elected govt, Mr. Harsh Dev Singh, Former Minister and Chairman J&K AAP State Co-ordination Committee said that prolonged central rule in the erstwhile state was a negation of the constitutional guarantees enshrined in the constitution of India. He said that several assurances by the central govt of restoring statehood to J&K at the appropriate time had failed to inspire the people of J&K who had lost faith in all such ‘melodramatic rants’ of the BJP leadership. He was addressing a press conference in Jammu alongwith senior leaders of the Party including Sardar Deep Singh, Major General (rtd) J.S Jamwal, Dr. Ghulam Mustafa Khan, Dr. Ayoub Mattoo, Farooq Banday, Kuldip Rao, R.S Chouhan, Amit Langer besides others.

Speaking to media persons, Mr. Harsh Dev Singh said that while the people of the erstwhile state were mystified and befuddled by the abrupt abrogation of Article 370, they had expressed their strong opposition to the dismantling of  200 year old historical State of J&K and downgrading it to the level of UT. He said that such a move of BJP led government had not only lowered the morale of the people of erstwhile State but caused huge disenchantment in the hearts and minds of general masses. “It was not a demotion of the State only. Infact every sensible citizen felt downgraded and humiliated. It had deeply hurt the sentiments of the people of J&K who felt belittled and dwarfed”, said Mr. Singh.

“History bears testimony that J&K acceded to the Union of India in 1947 only due to the historic decision taken by Maharaja Hari Singh despite numerous stumbling blocks, pulls and pressures. The demotion of State to UT level was not only unprecedented in the history but amounted to huge disparagement of the patriotic people of Jammu and Kashmir”, observed Mr. Singh. Demanding early restoration of statehood and installation of an elected govt, Mr. Harsh Dev urged for personal intervention of the President of India to save the people of J&K from dictatorial and autocratic regime.

Major General J.S Jamwal and Dr. Ghulam Mustafa Khan (senior AAP leaders) pointed towards the growing tensions in various parts of the UT and the failure of administration to come up to the peoples’ expectations. They said that bureaucratic rule was no answer to the prevalent crisis. The LG administration had lost connect with the masses. The unemployed, semi-employed and contractuals were on the roads with none to even take note of their sufferings and grievances. The people inhabiting the rural areas were suffering badly for basic amenities with no access whatsoever to the corridors of power. With hardly any forum to ventilate their grievances, the people were suffering badly in the absence of a popular govt thereby resulting in growing alienation amongst the masses, said the AAP leaders.