The state unit of Congress on Tuesday said the party was ready for Assembly elections in J&K, day after Bhartiay Janta Party (BJP) said it wanted early elections in the state.
“We are ready for elections and won’t shy away from giving tough fight to our opponents,” party’s state President G A Mir said.
Taking a dig at National Conference and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), the two parties which boycotted Panchayat and Municipal polls earlier this year Mir said these parties were now demanding Assembly elections for their “own interests”.
The senior Congress leader said from June last year his party has been demanding early conduct of Assembly elections in the state.
Presently under the President’s rule, Jammu and Kashmir is without elected government from June last year when BJP pulled out of the coalition with PDP to bring down the Mehbooba Mufti-led government.
“There is no alternative to an elected government. The miniseries of people can be solved only by a popular government,” he claimed.
Mir’s statement came a day after Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) National General Secretary and in-charge J&K, Ram Madhav said his party was ready for Assembly elections in the State.
To a question about some leaders leaving the party, Mir tried to play down the issue. “This is a routine thing and happens in every party. Those who are leaving the Congress and joining other parties had basically come from other parties,” he said. “Grassroots members and activists are not leaving the party.”
On Monday, Congress stalwart and former Deputy Commissioner Iqbal Malik, along with some party members and Sarpanchs quit Congress and joined BJP at party headquarters in presence of Ram Madhav.
After their joining Madhav said party was hopeful to get a landslide victory in Assembly elections in the state.
Earlier on June 15 another Congress member Riyaz Ahmad from north Kashmir’s Pattan joined Peoples Conference.
A source in Congress said that internal tiffs were going on within the party in J&K after the party’s drubbing in the state in Lok Sabha polls.
The source said two meetings to analyse the reasons behind defeat went inconclusive.
In fact, an important meeting of senior party leaders from New Delhi, Ambika Soni and Ghulam Nabi Azad with states leaders was postponed at last minute.
According to the source, the state leaders want a change in leadership while a faction has also threatened to divide state Congress.