Srinagar: National Conference president Farooq Abdullah was on Saturday unanimously chosen as the chairman of the recently-floated Peoples Alliance for Gupkar Declaration (PAGD) while PDP chief and former J&K chief minister Mehbooba Mufti will be his deputy.
The alliance released a statement saying that CPM leader Mohammad Yousuf Tarigami will be the convenor of the alliance, while Sajad Lone of People’s Conference has been named as its spokesperson.
The amalgam leaders, who met at the residence of Mehbooba Mufti for the first time after its formation, adopted the flag of the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir as its symbol. The alliance will come out with a white paper within a month on governance in Jammu and Kashmir over the past one year since the abrogation of Article 370, Lone told reporters after the meeting.
“The white paper will not be rhetoric. It will be based on facts and figures to present the reality to the people of Jammu and Kashmir and around the country… An impression is being given that all the corruption had happened in Jammu and Kashmir only,” Lone said.
“Our erstwhile flag of the state will be the symbol of our alliance,” Lone added.
Dr Farooq Abdullah, the president of the alliance and president of the National Conference, said “ Those who have been spreading propaganda that Gupkar alliance is anti-national are wrong. We are anti-BJP and that doesn’t mean being anti-national.”
“They have harmed this country and its Constitution. We want the rights of the people of J&K to be returned. That is all. Their attempts to divide us on religion will fail” he said. He stated that when they talk of the revival of 370, they also talk of regional autonomy of area in Jammu and Ladakh.
It’s not an anti-national Jamat, our aim is to ensure that the rights of people of J&K and Ladakh are restored. Attempts of dividing us in the name of religion will fail. It’s not a religious fight: Farooq Abdullah after ‘People’s Alliance for Gupkar Declaration’ meet in Srinagar pic.twitter.com/QqHKgbKQYD
— ANI (@ANI) October 24, 2020
This is the first time that regional parties of J&K have come together and made a structure in the shape of the Gupkar Declaration for people, which will fight for the restoration of article 370, Abdullah said.
The meeting which happened at Mehbooba Mufti residence was attended by National Conference, People’s Democratic Party, People’s Conference, Awami National Conference, CPIM, Jammu Kashmir People’s Movement.
However, the Congress party, which also signed the Gupkar Declaration on 4th August 2019, a day before the abrogation of Article 370, was not part of today’s meeting. The alliance also decided to hold its next meeting after a fortnight in Jammu, followed by a convention in Srinagar on November 17.