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Won’t make any false promise on restoration of Article 370: Ghulam Nabi Azad

Article 370 can’t be restored. Its restoration needs a two-thirds majority in the Parliament. Will focus on statehood for J&K, says former Cong veteran

Statesman News Service | Jammu |

Former Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad on Sunday said that he would not make any false promise on the restoration of Article 370 nor would allow other political parties to exploit the people’s sentiments on the sensitive issue.


Azad, who was addressing his maiden public rally in Kashmir after quitting the Congress recently, said: “Article 370 can’t be restored. Its restoration needs a two-thirds majority in the Parliament. I will not allow parties to exploit the people’s sentiments in the name of Article 370. I will not mislead people on the issue. It cannot come back.”


Beginning from the north Kashmir’s Baramulla as a part of his programme to hold rallies in all regions of the Valley, Azad said that his party will focus on the restoration of full statehood of J&K, right to land and employment to the native domicile.


Azad, who reached Srinagar on Saturday evening after addressing a series of rallies in his home turf of Doda and Kishtwar districts, said: “Political exploitation has killed more than one lakh people in Kashmir and orphaned five lakh children. I will not seek votes on falsehood and exploitation. I will speak only what’s achievable even if it damages me in the elections.”


The former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister said that he would announce the formation of his new political party within 10 days and asserted that its ideology will be ‘independent.’


The mission of the new political outfit would be to struggle for the restoration of Jammu and Kashmir’s statehood and to fight for job and land rights of the people, he said.


“My party will be Azad. Many of my colleagues said that we should name the party as Azad. But I said never. However, its ideology will be independent, which will not join or merge with any other party. That may happen after my death, but not till then,” he said.


He added: “My party will be development-oriented. Its agenda will be to give employment opportunities to the people.” Azad said that he was not against any political party, whether national or regional. “Many people across party lines are my friends,” he said.