BJP unlikely to raise Art 370 during campaigning in JK

As it aims to capture power in Jammu and Kashmir, BJP is unlikely to rake up in campaign its pet issue of revocation of Article 370, which the party maintains stops complete integration of the State with the country by according it a special status.
BJP, which has launched ‘Mission 44 Plus’ to win a majority in the Assembly election, will instead focus on development and the alleged “misrule” of the twin families of Abdullahs of National Conference and Muftis of PDP.
“We will go to people in the name of development and getting the State rid of these two families. Their ‘family raj’ stands for corruption and deprivation,” said party General Secretary Ram Madhav, who is in charge of the State.
When asked whether revocation of Article 370 will figure prominently in the party’s campaign, he declined to comment.
Madhav said the manifesto for the State election will make things clear.
Party sources, however, said they will “soft-pedal” the controversial issue as the focus is on getting the magic figure of 44 in 87-member House.
“Article 370 is a national issue for us. State Government has nothing to do with it and any decision on the issue will vest with the Union Government,” the sources said.
There is a strong public feeling in the Muslim-dominated Valley against any tweaking of the Article which grants the State special privileges.
Looking to reach out to the voters in the Valley as well, Prime Minister Narendra Modi will address public rallies there, focussing on his theme of development. He will launch campaign after his return from Australia on November 20.
The Valley has 46 seats compared to 37 in Jammu region and four in Ladakh and the party will have to win seats in Kashmir if it is to get a majority. The party is confident of doing well in the Jammu region.
BJP is also focussing on registration of migrant Kashmiri Pandit voters in the electoral roll as they can play a decisive role in a few seats in Kashmir.
The sources said an important State leader will join the party on November 9. There has been talk that the party is looking for a post-poll tie up Sajjad Lone-led People’s Conference. (AGENCIES)


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