SRINAGAR, Oct 16: Hilal Rather, son of veteran National Conference leader Abdul Rahim Rather, joined the Jammu and Kashmir People’s Conference today.
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Rather, who is out on bail in a case related to diversion of loan money taken from Jammu and Kashmir Bank, joined the People’s Conference in the presence of party chairman Sajad Gani Lone.
Asked if he had consulted his father and NC leader Abdul Rahim Rather on joining Lone’s party, Rather replied in the negative.
“I respect my father and he has been magnanimous in giving me space to take my own decisions. I have taken this decision on my own,” he said.
Rather said he chose People’s Conference as he wanted to work for the youth of Jammu and Kashmir who have immensely suffered due to the ongoing conflict.
Asked why he did not join the National Conference, he said he did not want to do “negative politics”.
“I want to do positive politics,” he asserted.
While welcoming Rather into the party, Lone said the People’s Conference has arrived.
“Let there be no delusions…There are many who refuse to see reality as it exists and want to create reality as they want to see it.
“We have come, we have arrived and we will conquer for the betterment of people of Jammu and Kashmir,” Lone added.
Rather is facing the investigation by the CBI into the loan taken from the J&K Bank for his ambitious township project in 2012, when his father was the finance minister of the erstwhile state. The loan was allegedly sanctioned without submitting any collateral and the money was diverted from the bank account.
The account had turned a non-performing asset in 2017.