J&K parties vow to defend special status, autonomy of state

Kashmir Article 35A 370 Farooq Abdullah Mehbooba Mufti - The Federal
National Conference president Farooq Abdullah and PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti address a press conference in Srinagar. Photo - ANI/Twitter

Mainstream political parties in Jammu and Kashmir on Sunday (August 4) said they would oppose any move like abrogation of Article 370, trifurcation of the state or delimitation of constituencies, that would take away the autonomy of the state as provided in the Constitution.

Addressing a press conference after an all-party meet in the wake of uncertainty prevailing in Kashmir, National Conference president Farooq Abdullah said the parties had resolved to protect the identity of Jammu and Kashmir, and appealed to people of Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh to maintain peace in all circumstances.

Also read: First they targeted separatists, now it’s parties: Mehbooba

“I appeal to both the countries, India and Pakistan not to take any step that may accelerate the tension between the two countries,” Abdullah, who had PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti at his side, said.

“It was unanimously decided that all the parties will be united in their resolve to protect and defend identity, autonomy and special status of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh, against all attacks, whatsoever,” he said.

Also read: For India’s sake, leave Article 35A alone, let Kashmir be

The parties have decided to send delegations to meet President Ram Nath Kovind, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and leaders of political parties to apprise them about the consequences of any attempt to abrogate Article 370 and Article 35A of the Constitution, or carry out delimitation of constituencies or trifurcating the state.

The meeting was also attended by Omar Abdullah (NC), Taj Mohiuddin (Congress), Muzaffar Beig (PDP), Sajad Lone and Imran Ansari (Peoples Conference), Shah Faesal (J&K Peoples Movement) and M Y Tarigami (CPI-M).

The meeting, which was scheduled to be held at residence of PDP president Mufti, was held at Farooq Abdullah’s residence due to his ill health.

Kashmir remained on edge on Sunday as authorities stepped up security deployment at vital installations and sensitive areas amid heightened terror threat and flare-up of hostilities with Pakistan along the Line of Control (LoC).

After the Jammu and Kashmir administration curtailed the Amarnath Yatra and asked pilgrims and tourists to leave the Valley at the earliest on Friday, anxious residents have been thronging markets to stock on essentials and serpentine queues have been visible outside shops and fuel stations.