'Forward movement on Gupkar Declaration once Mehbooba is set free'

J&K Congress chief Ghulam Ahmad Mir on Monday said that any forward movement on the Gupkar Declaration depends upon when former chief minister and PDP leader Mehbooba Mufti is set free.

Mir was talking to reporters on the sidelines of the party’s event at its Srinagar headquarters.

Congress is also among the political parties including National Conference, Peoples Democratic Party, Jammu and Kashmir Peoples Conference, CPIM and Awami National Conference, who forged an alliance recently to “strive for restoration of Article 370, Article 35-A, the Constitution of J&K, and the restoration of the state.”

“We will sit when Mehbooba Mufti will be set free. We all have demanded that she is also among the stakeholders. She should be set free. When she would be set free, all like-minded parties would sit together and the next line of action would be chalked out which would be conveyed to you,” said Mir in reply to a question.

On the recent announcement of Panchayat polls, Mir said though his party is in favour of polls, the government should consider the overall security situation before conducting any exercise.

“Two years ago we had said that the situation is not conducive and people are sad. It was when then governor Satya Pal Malik had said we had conducted 100 percent polls peacefully. How is it now that out of 32000 vacancies, 13000 vacancies have not been filled,” said Mir.

He added: “We are not against polls, but it is for the government to first assess ground and security situations. Killings of BDC chairmen have been happening in broad daylight.”

He also accused BJP of making false statements post abrogation of J&K’s special status.

“It is a party which only makes statements. They start their morning peddling a lie and people believe that it is true, since they announce it through 50 mics, and so loud that a common man in the evening feels that it is right. They will face the truth when their performance will be assessed by the people when there will be a contest in J&K,” said Mir.

He added people of J&K may be “economically weak”, but they are “politically so rich” that they know to give answers at the right time.