Irfan Yattoo/Javed Sofi
Srinagar, Jam 28: Member of Parliament and General Secretary Incharge Communication, AICC, Jairam Ramesh Saturday said that restoration of the democratic process in J&K would be the top priority of the Congress party.
Addressing the press conference at PCC headquarters in Srinagar, Jairam Ramesh stated thatthe restoration of the democratic process in J&K is of the utmost urgency and importance and that all other concerns would be dealt with once J&K is granted statehood once again.
"There are concerns relating to property and employment that also need to be addressed through legal and administrative means. All of these may be done through democratic means if statehood is restored, he said.
Regarding Ladakh, Jairam Ramesh said it should also be given constitutional powers under schedule 6. The difference between UT and UT is that under schedule 6 of the Indian constitution, Ladakh’s affairs will be managed by local elected representatives,” he said.
Jairam Ramesh said in the context of BJY, there are many political issues in Jammu and Kashmir of day-today concerns. This Yatra is not meant as a forum to address these issues.
“We want to clear it that function on the Monday is not a coalition-building exercise. We had extended our invitation to good faith to like minded political parties, who we believe oppose the policies and programs of BJP. It is not a platform build for the 2024 elections,” he said.
Jairam Ramesh said on Monday, the flag hoisting ceremony will be held at Party headquarters at Lal Chowk. The opposition parties have been invited to take advantage of ending Bharat Jodo Yatra, he said.
Ramesh further said that of total 136 days, Rahul Gandhi led yatra marched 4080 kilometres in 116 days in which the people from different walks of the life participated and extended their support.
He said they are expecting large number of political leaders on Monday program. All India Congress Committee workers, Chief Ministers, Galaxy of leaders from across the country will participate in conclusion day of Bharat jodoYata.
Regarding security arrangements, the congress leader said on Saturday administration made strict arrangements. But, despite that, thousands of people – men, women, children, elderly, every section of the society – stood on the roads and welcomed the Yatra and Gandhi heartily.
He said the Yatra has given the people “a voice to speak out against unemployment, price rise and hatred”.The way the people of J-K have welcomed the yatra, it has made clear that people here have been troubled,” Ramesh said.
Earlier, Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra also joined her brother Rahul Gandhi, PDP President, Mehbooba Mufti and her daughter Iltija Mufti joined Gandhi at the Bharat Jodo Yatra at Lethpora in Pulwama.
The administration has deployed tight security arrangements before the yatra stopped for a break at Lethpora.
Rahul Gandhi also paid homage to the 40 CRPF personnel who were killed in a suicide car bomb attack at Lethpora by laying a bouquet at the spot where the security force's bus was blown up in February 2019.
The Yatra finally came to a halt at Galander Pampore and is scheduled to resume on Sunday from Panthachowk to Sher- e -Kashmir Stadium.
Senior party leaders, including Alqa Lamba, Raman Bhalla, Ghulam Ahmad Mir, Vikar Rasool, Mohammad Anwar Bhat, Umar Jaan and others accompanied Rahul Gandhi during the Yatra through Pulwama.
" People showed huge response towards the yatra and walked shoulder to shoulder with Rahul Gandhi," Congress leader, Raman Bhalla said, adding that people joined the yatra en-mass for making it sure that the passion with which Rahul Gandhi started it must prevail.
He thanked local people for taking great interest in the yatra. He added that various political parties may have different divisional agenda but for the nation the agenda is to raze the wall of hatred and strengthen bonds of kinship and brotherhood.
" We have to raise voices of local people, our statehood has been snatched, There are issues here like unemployment," he said, adding that the BJP has strangulated democracy.
" Democracy needs to be restored, People here want to elect their representatives through democratic means," he said.
The Yatra was held in five districts in Jammu and Kashmir while a main and culmination function will be held on January 30 and a flag hoisting ceremony will be done at PCC headquarters.