Keeping his faith on Indian Judiciary, Loksabha MP and President of National Conference Farooq Abdullah said that the SC would soon hear the petitions challenging the abrogation of Article 370. He also promised to continue his fight for the special status.
He said the next assembly polls will provide the first opportunity to fight the battle politically for the special status of J&K under the provisions of the Indian Constitution. "We are in the Supreme Court (for the restoration of Article 370) and are hopeful that it will hear the petitions soon and we will get relief from this difficult situation," Abdullah said.
The NC President was addressing a day-long convention of the party’s block workers, office-bearers and functionaries at Batote in Ramban district as part of efforts to sensitise them on the ongoing special summary revision of electoral rolls.
"We are not only dependent on the Apex Court," Former Chief Minister told them. "We are having a political fight without asking people to throw bricks, grenades or use guns. Our fight is a political fight and we are going to fight it politically. Obviously, the first chance we have got is the next Assembly election. The more we win, the more we will be able to take forward this in the Assembly”, he added.
The comments of Abdullah came in the backdrop of the recent comments made by former Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad regarding the special status of the valley state. Addressing his very first rally after parting ways with the Congress Azad said that he would not make ‘misleading promises’ of restoring Article 370. His stance was visibly not well received by the people of the valley as the crowd was thinner than 300 people.
However, People’s Alliance or Gupkar Declaration (PAGD) of which NC is a constituent always kept the restoration of Article 370 in top of their agenda.
In reference to the struggles of independence he said that the National Conference never abandoned the flags of secularism. "In 1947, the Muslim majority Jammu and Kashmir heard the chants of Allah-u-Akbar (God is great) but we never accepted the two-nation theory. Had we gone there, what would have happened to Hindus, Sikhs and Buddhists (of Jammu and Kashmir). They had only option to migrate and our fight was against it”, notes Abdullah.
He also rejected the characterisation of India as communal and said, “We are not ready to accept that India is communal. India has been secular and it will remain secular”.
Downplaying the recent controversy over school staff making students recite the famous bhajan "Raghupati Raghav Raja Ram..." in a classroom in Kashmir, he added, "I used to sing Bhajans…By singing Bhajan, have I become a Hindu? If a Hindu is visiting the Ajmer Sharif Dargah or the Nizamuddin Auliya shrine, does he become a Muslim?"
He termed "frivolous thinking" the ban on 'Dastaar Bandi' (turban tying ceremony) of politicians by the Jammu and Kashmir Waqf Board and said "it is an honour bestowed on people which is prevalent since the Dogra rule."
The Jammu and Kashmir Waqf Board had recently issued an order saying 'Dastaar Bandi' would only be done to felicitate those who have made achievements in the religious field.
"With time, such types of orders will vanish and Dastaar Bandi (ceremonies) will return and nobody is going to stop it. It is an honour and is prevalent since the Maharaja’s time," he said, adding though caps replaced turbans, elderly people still wear turbans and are honourable.
(With PTI Inputs)