Omar will not contest Assembly polls till J&K statehood is restored: Farooq Abdullah

Update: 2022-11-04 02:32 GMT
Former Jammu and Kashmir CM Omar Abdullah.

SRINAGAR: National Conference (NC) president Farooq Abdullah on Thursday confirmed that his son and party president Omar Abdullah will not contest the Assembly elections until and unless Jammu and Kashmir’s statehood is restored.

“He has already made it clear that he will not contest the Assembly election until J&K’s statehood is restored,” the Senior Abdullah told reporters at Budgam near here.

He was replying to queries on the NC’s picking up the constituency in-charges for all but one 47 Assembly segments of the Kashmir Valley a day earlier. The list shows a local party activist Dr. Mohammad Shafi as the in-charge of Beerwa constituency of district Budgam wherefrom Omar Abdullah was elected in the last Assembly polls held in 2014.

The NC president, however, dispelled reports that those figuring in the list would be the party’s candidates for the Assembly election likely to be held in March-April 2023, thereby shutting the door for electoral alliance or seat adjustment with other constituents of the People’s Alliance for Gupkar Declaration or any other opposition party.

Abdullah said, “These people have been nominated only to work at the grassroots level in the respective constituencies to know and understand the issues confronting the people so that we do get valuable feedback. The dates for the polls have not been announced yet and then we haven’t discussed or decided on the (poll) alliances.”

Omar Abdullah had in an opinion piece appearing in The Indian Express in July 2020, after his release from prolonged detention, said that he will not contest Assembly elections till the time J&K remains a Union Territory.” He had said, “As for me, I am very clear that while J&K remains a Union Territory I will not be contesting any Assembly elections. Having been a member of the most empowered Assembly in the land and that, too, as the leader of that Assembly for six years, I simply cannot and will not be a member of a House that has been disempowered the way ours has.” 

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