4 JK politicians likely to be part of squad
Srinagar, Oct 27: Four politicians from Jammu and Kashmir are likely to be included in the Government of India’s Goodwill Hajj Delegation this year.
In a calibrated move from Government of India, while the delegation is likely to include two senior politicians from ruling National Conference and opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), state Congress leader from Prof Saif-ud-Din Soz’s camp and an independent legislator owing allegiance to Union Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad has also been included in the proposed list.
The politicians from J&K likely to be the part of the Hajj Goodwill Delegation include senior NC leader and Finance Minister Abdul Rahim Rather, senior PDP leader and prominent Shia cleric Moulvi Iftikhar Hussain Ansari, former minister and legislator Hakeem Muhammad Yasin and state Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Monga.
The practice of sending Hajj Goodwill Delegation, originated in the aftermath of 1965 war with Pakistan.
Pakistani diplomats and officials, according to reports, used this international religious gathering of Muslims to present their perspective on the conflict in Kashmir.
The Government of India decided to counter the Pakistani version by sending a Hajj Goodwill Delegation to Saudi Arabia, obviously at state expense. Since its inception in 1966, it is led by a union minister who meets his Saudi counterpart and others. In its early years, it consisted of five members. Now its numbers have shot to 70, including spouses of the delegates.
Lastupdate on : Thu, 27 Oct 2011 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Thu, 27 Oct 2011 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Fri, 28 Oct 2011 00:00:00 IST
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