National Conference (NC) vice-president Omar Abdullah today said that as a political party, it is understandable why the BJP does not want elections in J&K. But I am “disappointed” with the Election Commission because in this morning’s press conference the Chief Election Commissioner said that the dates for the J&K Assembly elections would be announced after considering all the factors.
Talking to newsmen in Srinagar after the victory of NC-Congress alliance in LAHDC-Kargil, Omar said “I want to ask the Election Commissioner, what are these factors? The fact is that there is only one factor and that is the fear factor”, he said. “Till now the BJP was hiding behind the Lieutenant Governor and now they are hiding behind the Election Commission”, he said.
He said the sweeping victory of the NC-Congress alliance in Kargil’s Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council (LAHDC) elections is the result of the people’s anger against the bifurcation of Jammu and Kashmir into two union territories. Omar thanked the people of Kargil for reposing trust in his party and the Congress and also for the defeat of the BJP in these elections.
“The BJP will now say that it was because of the Muslim majority voters in Kargil. I want to ask them if the division of J&K done on 5 August 2019 was on a religious basis. If that was so, then I must remind the BJP that Ladakh is a Muslim majority region, although there is a sizeable number of the Buddhist population there. We did not fight these elections on the basis of religion. This is proved by the fact that our elected councilor from Padam seat in these elections is a Buddhist”, he said.
“The fact is that development and religion are non-issues in Ladakh right now. The only issue this time is the bifurcation of the state. The BJP had been telling the world that the people of Ladakh wanted separation from Kashmir and the abrogation of Article 370. But these elections have shown that the people in Ladakh are as angry on these two issues as those in Kashmir and the Jammu division”, he added.