Apni Party delegation will meet LG to seek restoration of Jammu and Kashmir's statehood: Bukhari

Bukhari also demanded the release of the youths who were detained in Kashmir Valley
Apni Party chief Altaf Bukhari (second from the right) along with party leaders during a presser in Srinagar.
Apni Party chief Altaf Bukhari (second from the right) along with party leaders during a presser in Srinagar. File: Mubashir Khan for Greater Kashmir

Srinagar, Sep 2: Jammu and Kashmir Apni Party president Altaf Bukhari on Friday said a party delegation would call on Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha soon to formally demand the restoration of Jammu and Kashmir's statehood.

Addressing a press conference here, Bukhari also demanded the release of the youths who were detained in Kashmir Valley.

Bukhari said when his party was formed, it had three main agendas -- protection of job and land rights of Jammu and Kashmir residents and the restoration of statehood.

He said the prime minister and the Union home minister had promised in Parliament that Jammu and Kashmir's statehood would be restored.

The former state minister also demanded the release of the youths detained in Kashmir Valley in the past few months.

"Preventive detentions have taken place in the last few months. First they (authorities) said it was to maintain law and order. Then they said it was for the smooth conduct of the Amarnath Yatra. Now that the Yatra is over and it concluded smoothly, we demand that all the youths in jails be released, he said.

He said there was a draconian system of detaining people for some faults of their relatives.

They are not given employment. Some are told the verification of their credentials is awaited. "Should we then hang our youths in Lal Chowk as there is no future for them," he said.

Asked about the apprehensions of outsiders being added to the electoral rolls in Jammu and Kashmir, Bukhari said the government had given assurances that there would be no wrongdoing.

"When this exercise will culminate by the end of September, we will pick up the first rolls to check if there are outsiders, he said.

On a question about former Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad announcing floating a new party in Jammu and Kashmir, Bukhari said the former Rajya Sabha MP might have defended Article 370 in Parliament and even tore his shirt, but let me tell the truth that Azad sahab voted for the abrogation of Article 370 .

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