People are feeling politically alienated: Altaf Bukhari

'BJP is behind division in Congress'
The worker’s convention was organized by advocate Sahil Bharti under the stewardship of provincial president Jammu Manjit Singh.
The worker’s convention was organized by advocate Sahil Bharti under the stewardship of provincial president Jammu Manjit Singh.Mir Imran/ GK

Ramgarh (Samba): J&K Apni Party president Syed Muhammed Altaf Bukhari on Saturday asserted that the people desperately wanted assembly elections for the first time in the history of Jammu and Kashmir.

In the same breath, he said that Jammu had a major role to play in upcoming elections by isolating the divisive forces bent upon destroying the peaceful communal atmosphere.

While addressing one day workers’ convention in Ramgarh in Samba district, Bukhari alleged that the BJP was behind the division of Congress in J&K as it wanted to serve its political agenda here.

Apni Party president also took a dig at NC and PDP as he mocked, “They (NC and PDP) would off and on target Apni Party, accusing it of serving the interest of BJP forgetting their past when one (NC’s Omar Abdullah) enjoyed the post of union minister at the Centre as BJP ally and other (PDP president Mehbooba Mufti) became the Chief Minister after entering into alliance with the same party (BJP) in J&K.

Bukhari stated that the political alienation of the people was widely being felt that was why there was desperation for assembly elections for the first time unlike the past. He also promised 50 percent amnesty to the domestic electricity consumers in Jammu and Kashmir, if elected to power.

The worker’s convention was organized by advocate Sahil Bharti under the stewardship of provincial president Jammu Manjit Singh.

On this occasion, dozens of people including advocates joined the Apni Party in presence of the party president and other senior leaders. Altaf Bukhari welcomed them into the party fold and hoped that their joining would strengthen the party.

In his speech, Bukhari said BJP betrayed the people of Jammu even after ruling Jammu and Kashmir indirectly through Lt Governor and Advisors from Delhi.

“They came to power by turning Jammu against Kashmir for political gains like NC, PDP and Congress parties but later they betrayed the trust of the Jammuites who gave them 25 assembly seats in erstwhile state of J&K. Within 24 hours, they joined hands with PDP and formed a coalition government bringing misery for the people of both the regions,” he said.

He further said, “BJP does not respect the sentiments of the people. They want power and to serve their political purpose.” He appreciated the people of Jammu for accommodating the people who migrated due to violence and other reasons from Kashmir and other parts of Jammu region and settled in Jammu.

“People of Jammu have a big heart as they accommodated the people from all regions and religions including Kashmiri Pandits, Kashmiri Muslims and others. Jammuites have maintained communal harmony despite all odds and attempts by the enemy of peace,” he added while appreciating the people in general.

He alleged, “The historic Dogra State was downgraded into two Union Territories and the Article 370 and Art 35A were scrapped for the political interest after snatching all the basic rights of the people of Jammu and Kashmir. As the Government of India and bureaucracy are enjoying the power, they do not want assembly polls in Jammu and Kashmir which is being demanded by the people of the erstwhile state from both the regions. It is for the first time after 1947 that people are demanding assembly polls as it has never happened in the history of Jammu and Kashmir.”

Bukhari said that the BJP allowed the non-locals to extract natural resources and sell them at higher rates due to which the construction cost increased. This emerging situation snatched the source of employment for hundreds of local people across Jammu and Kashmir and made them helpless, he said.

“We will not tolerate policies which are against the interest of the people. If the Apni Party forms the next government, we will push outside Lakhanpur all the non-locals, who have exploited the natural resources,” he said.

Apni Party president claimed that they witnessed the BJP rule in which no development took place and instead unemployment increased manifolds with the cancellation of the selection lists. “Jammu remained the worst hit with the BJP’s selective approach. Instead of giving employment, they snatched jobs. I appeal to the people to give a chance to the Apni Party to form a majority government in Jammu and Kashmir. We are committed to provide equal opportunity for development, employment and other opportunities,” he said.

Under the present government, he alleged one could find only outsiders as government officials in the Civil Secretariats and district administration while the local government officials who worked on merits were sidelined.

“If we come to power, we will replace the non-local government officials and the local government officials will get the preference to ensure justice with the local population of Jammu as well as Kashmir,” he said.

For this, he asked the people to vote for the candidates of Apni Party in the upcoming assembly elections as it would end their suffering and provide them an opportunity to get their issues resolved by their representatives.

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