Gupkar parties denied ‘self rule’, ‘autonomy’ to local bodies: Dr Jitendra

NEW DELHI: In a scathing attack on the Gupkar Alliance, Union Minister Dr Jitendra Singh accused the Gupkar parties of having all these years denied “self-rule” and “autonomy” to the grassroot local bodies even though these parties always kept this at the top of their political manifesto.
In a detailed interview to a national TV channel, the parts of which were released today, Dr Jitendra Singh said, both the regional parties, National Conference and PDP, as well as the national party Congress owe it to explain to the people of Jammu & Kashmir the reason why they did not allow constituting and holding elections to District Development Councils for 70 years, which are being held now for the first time.
In reply to a question, he said, “to those who ask what Modi or Amit Shah has done, my single sentence answer, in the immediate context, would be that they have given District Development Councils to Jammu & Kashmir for the first time after independence”.
Accusing the Gupkar Alliance parties of democratic, constitutional and moral impropriety, Dr Jitendra Singh asked, what right did they have to continuously harp on the theme of self-rule and autonomy for themselves and their families when they were not ready to extend the same privilege at grassroot level.  Not only this, he said, these parties did not even allow the implementation of the 73rd and 74th Amendment of the constitution, which would have granted the Panchayat and other local body elected representatives direct access to Central grants.
He demanded a thorough probe about how the successive governments in the erstwhile State had spent the Central fund which was meant to be placed at the disposal of local body representatives but that was not done.
To another question, Dr Jitendra Singh said, the partners in the Gupkar Alliance are working at cross purposes with each other and would eventually end up cutting into each other’s roots. The more they try to push forward their newfound narrative, the more they would be exposing themselves before the people of Jammu & Kashmir and that of India.