National Conference Provincial President Devender Singh Rana on Wednesday lashed out at the Congress and BJP for playing “villains” to democracy in Jammu and Kashmir, nurtured and sustained by Sheikh Abdullah over the years.

Leading party leaders and workers in paying homage to the Sheikh on his 113th birth anniversary here, Rana said, “The Congress made repeated assaults by conspiring against democratically elected governments in 1953 and 1984, to quote a few, in a bid to weaken democracy in Jammu and Kashmir and the BJP’s recent “dubious role” will also go as a black chapter in the annals of democratic history of Jammu and Kashmir.”

He said the conspiracies have all along failed and the National Conference has, in fact, emerged stronger after every political assault due to the support of the people in all the three regions of the state.

“Now that the elections are round the corner, National Conference under the leadership of Farooq Abdullah and Omar Abdullah will go with renewed strength to the people and shall seek mandate for a strong and stable majority government in the state,” he said, adding that the people want a single-party government as dispensations with crutches cannot satiate their political, developmental, and economic aspirations.

Urging the party activists to gear up for the elections, Rana said emergence of a strong National Conference will steer out the state to peace, prosperity, and development. He cautioned against conspiracies to divide the people on religious, regional, and caste lines and said maintaining the unity and single entity of Jammu and Kashmir will be a befitting tribute to Sheikh Abdullah. He emphasised the crucial need of strengthening and sustaining the time tested unity, saying no society will progress if its foundations are laid on myopic considerations.