PM Modi promised J&K’s statehood will be restored at the right time at the recently held J&K All-Party Meet and gave an answer to the conundrum of J&K to receive statehood. In the meeting, former CMs of J&K and other high-ranking political executives from J&K met PM Modi to discuss the key issues of the disputed region.
PM Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah held meeting with representatives of J&K political parties in New Delhi. Other than the 14 representatives of parties, the meeting also included LT-Gov of J&K Manoj Sinha, NSA Advisor Ajit Doval, and other senior officials. It should be noted that it was PM Modi’s first meeting with J&K’s political leaders since the scrapping of Article 370 and turning J&K into two separate territories.
On Thursday, June 24, PM Modi hosted 14 J&K political leaders that included former 4 CMs Farooq Abdullah, Omar Abdullah, Ghulam Nabi Azad, Mehbooba Mufti. Further the deputies of the Chief Ministers, high level political executives also attended the meeting.
“Centre keen on restoring govt in J&K”: Omar Abdullah
In the meeting, several key agendas were discussed which included restoring full statehood in J&K, reinstating Article 370, assembly elections, & state delimitation. After the meeting, Omar Abdullah was quoted by the Indian Express saying-
“The Central government is keen to restore an elected government in Jammu and Kashmir at the earliest. The Prime Minister has talked about an early delimitation process. That means they are looking at following that up with Assembly elections.”
Modi keen on shortening ‘dil ki doori & Dilli ki doori’
Meanwhile, PM Modi also said how he wanted to meet the leaders earlier, but due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, his hands were tied. According to sources, PM Modi highlighted how he is keen to shorten ‘dil ki doori’ & ‘Dilli ki doori’ – meaning distance between hearts & distance from Delhi. In that regard, PM Modi shared how he’s interested to initiate & complete the delimitation exercise.
What is delimitation?
For the uninitiated, Delimitation is the process of redrawing boundaries for the Assembly or Lok Sabha seats. The process is carried by the Delimitation Commission. It should be noted that Delimitation Commission’s orders are not subjected to be questioned before any court of law.
After the meeting, PM Modi took to Twitter and wrote, “Today’s meeting with political leaders from Jammu and Kashmir is an important step in the ongoing efforts towards a developed and progressive J&K, where all-round growth is furthered.”
Today’s meeting with political leaders from Jammu and Kashmir is an important step in the ongoing efforts towards a developed and progressive J&K, where all-round growth is furthered. pic.twitter.com/SjwvSv3HIp
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) June 24, 2021
In another tweet, the Prime Minister wrote, “Our democracy’s biggest strength is the ability to sit across a table and exchange views. I told the leaders of J&K that it is the people, specially the youth who have to provide political leadership to J&K, and ensure their aspirations are duly fulfilled.”
Our democracy’s biggest strength is the ability to sit across a table and exchange views. I told the leaders of J&K that it is the people, specially the youth who have to provide political leadership to J&K, and ensure their aspirations are duly fulfilled. pic.twitter.com/t743b0Su4L
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) June 24, 2021
Modi Meet: Who Said What?
As per the sources, INC’s Ghulam Nabi brought 5 demands from his party to the meeting – statehood, elections, guarantees to locals on jobs, property, rehabilitation of Kashmiri Pandits, releasing of political prisoners.
Omar Abdullah, who became J&K’s youngest CM in 2009, was quoted by Indian Express saying-
“We said delimitation was not needed. When the rest of the country will have delimitation in 2026, why is Jammu and Kashmir being treated differently? If the purpose of the August 5 (2019) decisions was to integrate Jammu and Kashmir with the Union, then a separate delimitation for J&K defeats the whole aim of those decisions. We will, however, consider the (Delimitation) Commission’s invitation to us for participation.”
Mehbooba Mufti, who served as the CM of J&K when it was a state before the abolishment of Article 379, claimed that she brought the issue of Article 370.
“This is a question of our identity. We didn’t get it from Pakistan, but were given by Jawaharlal Nehru and Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel. It assures us rights on land and jobs. There will be no compromise on this,”
-she was quoted saying.