National Conference president Farooq Abdullah on Friday said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi cannot remove the Article 370 and Article 35A, which guarantee special status to Jammu-Kashmir despite the massive mandate.

Addressing reporters on Friday, a day after he won Srinagar Lok Sabha constituency, Abdullah said, “No matter how powerful Prime Minister Narendra Modi has become after winning the Lok Sabha elections, he cannot remove Article 35A and Article 370 from the state of Jammu-Kashmir.”

Abdullah also expressed confidence that Congress president Rahul Gandhi will stage a comeback from Amethi in 2024.

Commenting on Congress’ debacle, Abdullah said that victory and defeat are “part of the game”.

Abdullah also urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to walk the extra mile to reach out to the people of Kashmir.

He hoped that the Modi-led central government would do justice with the people of Jammu and Kashmir. He said rights of the people were needed to be protected and a sense of security instilled among them.

Abdullah urged the Centre to expedite development, complete the rail project bring Kashmir on the railway map on an immediate basis and lay emphasis on dependable road communication.

At the same time, he exhorted enthusiastic NC members to gear up for assembly elections.

Farooq Abdullah said his party believed in healthy political discourse. “We have to maintain and promote decency in politics,” he said and lauded the cadre for keeping away from reactionary politics.

He said India belonged to all and this spirit had to be promoted and strengthened at all costs.

The National Conference won all three seats in Kashmir Valley – Srinagar, Anantnag and Baramulla. The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) won two seats in the Jammu region and one from Ladakh. PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti and her party lost on every seat.