'Get ready for LA polls'

The BJP’s working President JP Nadda while chairing party’s core group meeting in New Delhi on Tuesday asked the J&K unit to get ready for Assembly elections in the state.

The party’s general secretary (Organisation) Ashok Kaul, who was part of the all important meet said the members of the state unit were told in “categorical terms” to finalise preparations for the election.

“The President asked us to get ready for the polls,” Kaul told Greater Kashmir over phone from New Delhi. “He (the President) said the Election Commission can announce poll dates any time after 15 August.”

Koul however said there was no discussion on Article 35A, during today’s meeting. “Why should we discuss it when the matter is pending before the Supreme Court? The party will go by the decision of the Court,” he said.

The 11-member party group from J&K was led by President Ravinder Raina. The group also included four general secretaries, four MPs, a former state party president and chief spokesperson.  

The senior BJP member said the meeting also didn’t discussion delimitation of Assembly segments in J&K. However, he said the prevailing Kashmir situation came up for the discussion.

Another senior BJP leader from the State, who attended the meeting, said they told President Nadda that people of Kashmir have “heaved a sigh of relief in the past one year and the Valley is marching on path of development”.

“We apprised the President about development activities being carried out in Kashmir,” he said. “We requested for the development-oriented initiatives for Kashmir and creation of avenues for state’s educated and unemployed youth.”

The senior BJP leader said the party activities in Kashmir including the ongoing membership drive were discussed threadbare.

“We apprised Nadda ji that BJP has finally managed to make serious inroads in Kashmir by registering at least 90,000 new members into the party fold,” he said. “We told him that we are hopeful that the party will pass the fixed target of increasing the membership in Kashmir by 20 percent,” he said.

The meeting also discussed the “overwhelming response” the party was getting in every district of Kashmir.