Politicians misleading people on restoration of Art 370: Azad

New political party to have ‘independent’ ideology

Fayaz Bukhari

Srinagar, Sept 11: Former Chief Minister, Ghulam Nabi Azad, who recently left Congress to form his own party, today said that politicians across Jammu and Kashmir are misleading common people over restoration of Articles 370 and 35-A just for vote bank politics.
While addressing his maiden public gathering at Baramulla in Kashmir after ending his association with the Congress party, Azad said: “Just for vote bank, I can’t mislead my people like other political leaders are doing. I will fight legally for the people of Jammu and Kashmir.”

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The former Union Minister said that welfare of the people of J&K is his sole motive and he cannot mislead his people for gaining the reins of power. “I will only talk about those things which are possible and achievable,” he said.
Azad said he will not raise issues over which he has no control. “Some people have been saying that I don’t talk about Article 370. I want to tell them that Azad does not befool people for electoral gains,” he added.
The former Chief Minister said if political parties are claiming to restore the special status through a formula, what are they waiting for then. “Let them not waste time to restore the special status,” he said.
He said that the political exploitation has killed one lakh people in Kashmir and orphaned five lakh children’ and he will not seek votes on ‘falsehood and exploitation’.
He lashed out at politicians over the allegations of his involvement in scrapping of Articles 370 and 35-A. He said that he was the only person who defended it in the Parliament and everyone knows who protested the move.
“I openly voted against the bill in the Parliament but some people are creating a false narrative for their vote politics,” he added.
While talking to reporters on the sidelines of the rally, Azad said that there should be at least 350 seats in the Parliament, which will help reverse the decision under the ambit of constitution.
“Azad knows what can and cannot be done. I or the Congress party or three regional parties cannot give you back Article 370, neither can (TMC chief) Mamata Banerjee, or DMK or (NCP chief) Sharad Pawar,” he said.
He said Congress party hasn’t been able to achieve more than 85 Lok Sabha seats in the last 10 years. “Its strength is decreasing in the Rajya Sabha with every State loss,” he added.
“I don’t think the Congress can get over 350 seats in the Lok Sabha elections,” he said. “Where from can I get it? Why mislead people?” he added.
He said he would not promise the moon and stars to the people but only those things that can be achieved. “I or the Congress party or three regional parties cannot give you back Article 370…,” he added.
Azad said he will announce the formation of his new political party within 10 days and asserted that its ideology will be “independent”.
The former Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha said his party will focus on restoration of Statehood to J-K, giving exclusive rights over jobs and land to its people and bring development.
Referring to Apni Party president Altaf Bukhari’s allegation that Azad had voted in favour of the abrogation of Article 370, he said Bukhari should first understand how Parliament works.
“I voted against the Bill brought by the Home Ministry for the revocation of Article 370,” Azad said.