Apni Party President Syed Altaf Bukhari on Monday said that his party was not against the newly formed People’s Alliance for Gupkar Declaration (PAGD) but was against the lies they are spreading.
“They have deceived people for the last several decades over the promises of self-rule and autonomy. We are not against them, but against their lies,” Bukhari said while talking to the media persons on the sidelines of party convention in north Kashmir’s Bandipora district.
According to the news agency KNO, Bukhari said that the issue of Article 370 is currently sub-judice. “We wish and pray that the top court of India will give the verdict, which would accommodate the aspirations of people in J&K,” he said.
He said the Apni Party was not the B team of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). “It is unfortunate that those who were in bonhomie with BJP in the previous regime in J&K and at present in Kargil are now levelling allegations on us,” Apni Party chief said.
About forthcoming district development council (DDC) election, the former minister said that these polls are not a referendum but are being conducted for the development. “I appeal to the people to come out and cast their ballot in the polls in our favour,” Bukhari said.
Press Statement of Apni Party:
President Syed Mohammad Altaf Bukhari said that Apni Party is not averse to formation of People’s Alliance for Gupkar Declaration (PAGD) but is in principle against its hollow slogans with which its signatories want to hoodwink the people in Jammu and Kashmir.
Bukhari set off on his maiden election campaign trail for District Development Council (DDC) elections and made his maiden address to the Party workers at Bandipora. He remarked that Apni Party’s contesting candidates across Jammu and Kashmir are the agents of development and political change who would speak on the problems and solutions in their respective areas.
While the campaign meeting had a delayed start due to bad weather, Apni Party president spoke to enthusiastic party cadres who were a mix of young and old experienced workers assembled from different parts of the district.
Bukhari said the Apni Party is not against any kind of democratic alliances formed between different political parties but the newly formed PAGD is spreading lies and is trying to befool the people through its false claims on the special status of J&K.
“Apni party also aspires for restoration of special status to J&K but since the matter is sub judice before the Hon’ble Supreme court, we have not claimed anything about it. However, we also hope and pray that the verdict of the Apex Court on restoration of Articles 370 and 35-A should meet the aspirations of people of J&K,” he reiterated.
He expressed hope and confidence that people of district Bandipora like other parts of J&K will come forward to support and vote for the Apni Party candidates in DDC elections so that they are empowered to work for the holistic development of this district which is known for knowledge and literature.
“Like its two tiers including Panch-Sarpanch and Block Development Council elections, DDC elections will complete the third of Panchayat Raj in J&K. These elections are purely meant for planning and development and those who are trying to compare these elections with any kind of referendum on the special status of J&K are befooling the people,” he observed.
Bukhari said that it is highly unfortunate on part of those political parties who are calling names and spreading canards against Apni Party just for making themselves relevant among the people.
“I want to remind those political parties who garnered votes to stop BJP in J&K and later on became its ally just for the sake of power and perks. Few leaders of the PAGD also enjoyed ministries in the NDA government. Those who are calling us names like A or B Team have been part of BJP until recently just for sharing power and positions. People have not forgotten these historical facts,” he remarked.
Bukhari said that it is crystal clear that the elected Members of Parliament belonging to the signatories of Gupkar Declaration who are crying hoarse about the Article 370 and 35-A have miserably failed to deliver on safeguarding the rights and interests of people of Jammu and Kashmir in the Country’s highest legislative forum, Parliament.
“Anyone can entertain the people by catchy slogans but times have changed and I hope the people will reply to these political parties as they deserve in coming elections,” he said, adding that Apni Party is open to any kind of public scrutiny for whatever it has committed since its inception and whatever it has delivered sofar.
He said that the political parties bet it NC, PDP, Congress or BJP have always been averse to the idea of strengthening the grassroots level democracy in Jammu and Kashmir. “Instead of formulating policies for the development of the weaker sections of society by and facilitating the devolution of powers these parties have always deceived them by depriving their legitimate rights including the right to basic amenities,” he added.
Speaking on the occasion, senior vice president Ghulam Hassan Mir also emphasized on the need for massive participation in upcoming polls so as to ensure the socio economic development of the people at the grassroots level. “People of J&K have witnessed enough of death and destruction in the last over three decades. Now we should rise to the occasion and ensure that our future generations proceed towards peace and prosperity,” he observed.
Vice President Apni Party Usman Majid also spoke on this occasion. Majid highlighted the lackadaisical attitude adopted by the successive governments in J&K that hampered the growth and developmental index of Bandipora district. “The people of Bandipora are well educated and politically mature enough to distinguish between the hollow slogans and practicality. I and confident that they will ensure a big win for the Apni Party candidates defeating those who have always tried to hoodwink them with false narratives and rhetoric,” he observed.
Besides, President, Sr. Vice President, Vice President, the meeting was addressed by Party’s district President Bandipora Syed Shafat Qazimi and various other leaders of the Party.