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Jammu KashmirNot Holding Assembly Polls In J&K Despite Situation Being ‘Normal’ Is Matter...

Not Holding Assembly Polls In J&K Despite Situation Being ‘Normal’ Is Matter Of Grave Concern: Azad


SRINAGAR, Oct 21: While the situation in and is “normal”, the continuing delay in holding assembly elections is a matter of “grave concern”, former chief minister Ghulam Nabi Azad said here on Saturday.
Addressing a public meeting in Batamaloo here, Azad said the situation has “not been more normal in the last 30-35 years” than it is now, but it was perhaps the first time in J-K's history that assembly polls have not been conducted for such a long time.
“When the situation was bad in J-K, and there was bloodshed and leaders left the Valley, Kashmiri Pandits left the Valley, that time also elections took place after five to six years,” Azad said.
“But, today when the situation is normal, and it has not been more normal than this in the last 30-35 years, still elections have not taken place in the last nine years. This is a matter of grave concern,” the former Congress leader and chairman of the Democratic Progressive Azad Party (DPAP) said.
Azad said it was the first rally in the last 36 years in the area.
“I am thankful to you that you came here, the number of people does not matter, but that there is peace in this area and a political meeting could take place is in itself a wonder. I think this is the first political meeting here in the last 35-36 years.
“When I was the Chief Minister or in the Congress, no one had the courage to conduct a meeting here. Because, unfortunately, the situation was not good in this area. I am happy that there is peace in the city now,” he said.
The former J-K Chief Minister said while the Lieutenant Hovernor's administration was doing its job, it cannot replace elected representatives.
“The administration is doing its job, but this is not its job. I am not saying LG is not doing his work, or officers are not doing their work, but we are asking them to do a job that is not theirs but is of ministers, MLAs, elected representatives,” he said.
He said an elected MLA or a Chief Minister reaches everywhere, roams among the people, and asks people about their issues.
“That does not happen now, because an officer is not for that, he is for running the office. If MLAs are made secretaries, they will destroy the files in one day,” he said.

Later, while speaking to reporters, the DPAP chairman said he and his party have always demanded that assembly elections were necessary as only legislators can serve the people effectively.
“The officers are intelligent and good, but the secretariat will suffer if they work like MLAs. So the election for MLAs should take place,” he said.
Referring to the situation in the Gaza Strip, Azad said people had expectations from the powerful countries to restore peace.
“Unfortunately, the powerful countries, who can restore peace and calm, themselves get involved then who will restore it?
“The way the situation in Gaza is, the way children are being killed, the way there is no food or water or milk and it has been made the 's biggest prison, the powerful countries could have intervened, but since they have not, we can only pray,” he said.
He asked the people to pray for the people of the Gaza Strip so that their sufferings end. (Agencies)

The Northlines is an independent source on the Web for news, facts and figures relating to Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh and its neighbourhood.

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