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PDP to go it alone in Jammu and Kashmir

Last updated on: March 12, 2009 21:34 IST

Maintaining that it would put up candidates in all six Lok Sabha seats in Jammu and Kashmir, the opposition Peoples Democratic Party on Thursday ruled out alliance with any party during the upcoming parliamentary polls.

"We are not looking for alliance partners. We will put up candidates in all six parliamentary seats in the state and there will be no tie up with the Bharatiya Janata Party or any other party," PDP patron and former chief minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed told media-persons in Srinagar. As for joining the the third front, which is emerging at the national level, Sayeed said the PDP will take a decision on the issue after the parliamentary elections.

Regarding the prospects of his party in the Lok Sabha elections, Sayeed said that although the overall trend was in favour of the PDP, the results could not be prejudged. He said despite PDP doing well in the last assembly elections by bagging 21 seats, five more than what it had won in 2002, its cadre were being geared up as the upcoming polls were another test for the party.

Earlier, he welcomed into the party fold former National Conference MLA from Shopian, Sheikh Mohammad Rafi, and three Peoples Democratic Front leaders Dr Ali Mohammad, Nazir Ahmad Itoo and Ghulam Hassan Bhat, who fought the last assembly elections unsuccessfully.

Launching a tirade against the ruling Congress-NC coalition, Sayeed said "Even after coming to power for more than two months, the two parties have not reached an agreement on a common minimum programme which is a must in a coalition". Questioning the credibility and sincerity of NC in pleading for a dialogue with separatists to resolve the Kashmir problem, he said that the NC had virtually abandoned the state's political and economic interests for the allurement of power.

The former chief minister wondered what moral authority NC had to argue about how the Kashmir issue should be addressed much less resolved when it had allowed the autonomy proposal that had been passed by the state assembly with an overwhelming majority to be treated with contempt by the then National Democratic Alliance government at the Centre of which the party was a partner and Omar Abdullah a minister. 

Saeed said the recent tragic incidents at Bomai, Sopore and Nowhatta in Srinagar have vitiated the atmosphere and there is an urgent need for reduction of troops in the state and revocation of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act. Asked why the issue was not raised during his three-year rule, Sayeed said the situation in 2002 was different as militancy was at its peak. However, in 2006, he had written a letter to the prime minister requesting for revocation of the Act.

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