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Jammu lawmaker Vikramaditya Singh quits PDP over regional issues

IANS | Jammu |

Vikramaditya Singh, a PDP lawmaker and grandson of Jammu and Kashmir’s former ruler Maharaja Hari Singh, resigned from the party because it was “no longer possible for me to be part of a party that continues to disregard aspirations of Jammu region”.

Singh, whose father is senior Congress leader Karan Singh, also announced his decision to leave the Legislative Council, the upper house of the state’s bicameral legislature.

He told reporters that he had written an open letter to Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti highlighting the issues over which serious differences had arisen between him and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

He said the demand of the people of Jammu to declare a state holiday on September 23 to commemorate the birthday of the former Dogra Maharaja Hari Singh, the inclusion of the period of Dogra rule in text books and the issue of Rohingya settlers in Jammu were emotional issues close to the heart of Jammu people.

“I feel it is neither morally nor ethically right for me to continue as a member of of the PDP. I therefore tender my resignation from the party… with immediate effect,” he said in the letter that he also posted on his social media accounts.

Singh said he would also write to the Chairman of the Legislative Council requesting him to accept his resignation.

He told reporters that there was a growing regional divide in Jammu and Kashmir, India’s only Muslim-majority state, which can be bridged by addressing the issues highlighted by him.

He said he had written to senior PDP leaders too asking them to address these issues but there had been no response from them.

“Mehbooba Mufti is the chief of the entire state and not just of one region.”