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Omar Abdullah Rules Out Pre-poll Alliance for Assembly Elections in J&K

Omar Abdullah, defending party's decision to join hands with the PDP and the Congress to stake claim for the formation government, the NC vice president said it was a difficult decision, taken to save the state after fighting as bitter rivals in the 2014 elections.


Updated:December 10, 2018, 6:27 PM IST
Omar Abdullah Rules Out Pre-poll Alliance for Assembly Elections in J&K
A file photo of former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah. (PTI)

Jammu: NC leader Omar Abdullah on Monday ruled out a pre-poll alliance with any party for the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly elections, saying his party had joined hands with the PDP and the Congress to "save the state".

The PDP had on November 21 staked claim to form a government with the backing of rival National Conference (NC) and the Congress. This was followed by another bid from the two-member People's Conference which claimed the support of the BJP and 18 MLAs from other parties.

After these developments, Governor Satyapal Malik abruptly dissolved the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly on the night of November 21.

"We will fight the (assembly) election on our own When we talk about forming the next government on our own, then there is no scope of leaving any seat for any one, even as I know they are eyeing some seats," Abdullah said Monday while addressing a function at party headquarters here.

Defending his party's decision to join hands with the PDP and Congress to stake claim for the formation government, the NC vice president said it was a difficult decision, taken to save the state after fighting as bitter rivals in the 2014 elections.

"We decided to do something to save the state, to strengthen the communal harmony and brotherhood, to restore peace - it was not an easy decision. I was aware that my party will suffer politically due to this decision," he said.

Asserting that he choose the state over his party, as it was for the betterment of Jammu and Kashmir and its people, Abdullah said the NC was to extend support to the PDP and Congress from outside and the government was to run for the time being till the situation gets back to normal for holding of fresh elections.

He called for holding of assembly polls in the state along with the general elections next year, and also challenged the BJP to announce its chief ministerial candidate while accusing the saffron party of betraying the people of Jammu region who had given it 26 seats in the last state elections.

The NC vice president said his party is prepared to face the people, unlike the BJP which is "trying to delay the elections on one pretext or the other knowing fully that it will face a drubbing in polls".

"We have started selection of candidates for the state polls. The only condition is, give me a candidate who can win. There may be some seats where we have no chance, but there are seats which we have been winning and the time has come to take these seats back," the former chief minister said.

He said the BJP claimed that the plan to form the government was orchestrated in Dubai and London at the behest of Pakistan.

"We were not the one. But the second letter (from Peoples Conference chairman Sajad Lone) came from London," Abdullah said.

"When I asked him (Ram Madhav) to prove (the allegation), he took his words back, because he was caught in his own lies," he said.

BJP general secretary Ram Madhav on November 22 withdrew his words after a furious Omar Abdullah dared him to prove his allegation that his party had tied up with the PDP to form government in Jammu and Kashmir at Pakistan's behest.

Abdullah said the PDP-Congress-NC combine had the numbers and there was no scope for horse-trading or any other malpractice here, unlike the BJP-supported group which had only 28 MLAs together.

The governor claimed that there were horse-trading attempts, he said and asked the BJP where did the other MLAs required to form the government came from.

"I can say with authority that the MLAs got threats from agencies. One MLA was told that either be part of the government for two years or prepare for arrest by NIA. "Another senior MLA was threatened that a CBI case against him will be opened. This is the problem those who are not able to come from the front door, are trying to grab the power by breaking the back door like a thief," Abdullah said.

"The compulsion when they (BJP) handed over the chief minister post to Mufti Mohammad Sayeed is understood as they had 26 MLAs while the PDP had 28. But how they can justify bringing a chief minister from a two-member party," he said.

The NC vice president claimed that the BJP will face drubbing in the next assembly elections given the mood of the people.

"When the bugle for assembly elections is sounded, we will emerge winner.

"Our strategy will be - to highlight the failures of the previous government and to reach out to the people and make them aware about the programmes and planning of the party for different sections of the society, besides focusing on basic amenities like water, power and roads," Abdullah said.

| Edited by: Anu Parthiban
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