‘If voted to power, NC will grant 33% reservation to women in Assembly’
National Conference president and MP Farooq Abdullah Thursday said united Jammu and Kashmir was crown of India and claimed that if voted to power, their government would grant 33 per cent reservation to women in the State Assembly.
“United Jammu and Kashmir is crown of the country which has to flourish as a single entity with dignity and honour,” Farooq said while welcoming dozens of BJP and Congress workers in the party fold at a function held at Sher-e-Kashmir Bhavan here this afternoon.
He assailed those day-dreaming about trifurcation of the state.
Cautioning against elements inimical to the single entity of Jammu and Kashmir, Farooq said all their machinations to create mistrust and hatred has to be foiled unitedly.
He hoped that the people will contribute in bringing back normalcy by maintaining unity and strengthening the bonds of communal harmony.
Farooq said a strong and stable government alone can steer Jammu and Kashmir to peace, progress and development.
“A government with absolute majority is answer to all the challenges confronting to the State”, he said.
He said political empowerment of women is necessary by ensuring reservation of seats in democratic institutions.
“If we come to power with absolute majority, NC will emulate some other states and grant 33 per cent reservations to women in the State Assembly,” Farooq said adding he was only yesterday told by Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik about such a reservation being given to women in his state.
He said his party is striving for empowering youth and satiating the urges and aspirations of all the regions.
Referred to party’s victory in 1996, Farooq said this brought about a discernible transformation in the infrastructural development and turnaround in the situation.
“A massive effort was launched to build the damaged schools, put health services and other utility services back on track. In 2000, my government provided a record 1.50 lakh jobs to educated unemployed and initiated various welfare programmes. This all happened because of the strong and stable government,” he added.
The NC president decried exploitation of religious sentiments for political and electoral gains, and said the nation cannot afford to get fragmented into bits and pieces on the basis of religion.
He said elections were not to be fought on religion, as these provide an opportunity to put in place responsive governments which serve the people in terms of development and economic emancipation.
He advised reactionary forces to refrain from exploiting public sentiments, especially during elections, adding that the growing trend of dividing the people should be eschewed at all costs.
He lamented the attempts of provoking people to fight over Mandir and Masjid issues for furthering political objectives and said India does not belong to a specific religion but it is a beautiful vase of flowers of different colours. “The people of all the faiths have equal rights in secular India”.
Stressing the need for creating conducive atmosphere for talks, Farooq said India and Pakistan should work towards this objective.
He recalled the statement of former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee about ‘friends can be changed but the neighbours’ and hoped that spirit will help both the nations to work for peace.