On the eve of the Budget session of Jammu and Kashmir Assembly, Opposition National Conference (NC) chief Farooq Abdullah today asked his party MLAs to raise issues like Sainik Colonies, separate townships for Kashmiri Pandits and NEET in the House.
He contended that ruling allies PDP and BJP are looking for new ways to weaken the state’s special status and the government should be held accountable for “reneging” on promises to secure the state’s political rights.
“The PDP-BJP government should be held accountable for reneging on all promises made in its ‘Agenda of Alliance’. It is our duty to hold the government accountable and to question it over its frequent U-turns and back-pedaling,” he said while presiding over a meeting of NC legislators, a day ahead of the start of the Budget session of the Assembly.
“Be it NFSA (National Food Security Act), the issue of NEET extension to J&K or the apprehensions of the people about Sainik Colonies or separate townships for people of a particular community, these are issues that we should raise in the Legislative Assembly and Legislative Council and seek clear, unambiguous answers from the government,” he said.
The NC president asked the party legislators to articulate the “angst” and “concerns” of the people in the Assembly and Council sessions.
“Our people have been left in the lurch as their sentiments were exploited to seek votes,” Abdullah said.
“There is an open assault on our constitutional special status and on what remains of the state’s autonomy and both PDP and BJP are committed to explore new ways to weaken the state’s special status,” he said.
“There is a clear and damning perception of dis-empowerment and sabotage in the state and the apprehensions of the people are justified,” he said, adding the “silence” of the government in answering these questions has further compounded the problem and created palpable discomfort at the grassroots level.
The NC leader said the state government is also answerable on the issues of law and order, justice and “tragic lack of political initiatives” within the state, which, he said, has led to an increase in the local youth joining militant ranks.
“The recent attacks in Srinagar and the mishandled situation in Handwara and Kupwara earlier are instances where the state government needs to be questioned,” he said.
He asked the party legislators to also raise the day-to-day issues of the people like ration shortage, infrastructural rot, corruption, unemployment and lack of development.