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Tuesday, January 25, 2022

J&K: PAGD leaders say ‘locked up’ at home before protest

The People’s Alliance for Gupkar Declaration, a mainstream coalition, had announced a peaceful sit-in protest against the draft.

By: Express News Service | Srinagar |
January 2, 2022 2:01:03 am
A photograph tweeted by Omar Abdullah on Saturday, showing “trucks parked outside our gates to scuttle” protest.

The Jammu and Kashmir administration Saturday thwarted the PAGD’s protest against the delimitation draft proposed by the Delimitation Commission by allegedly restricting the leaders at home.

The People’s Alliance for Gupkar Declaration, a mainstream coalition, had announced a peaceful sit-in protest against the draft. The protest was organised after three National Conference (NC) MPs, including Dr Farooq Abdullah, met with the members of the commission in New Delhi on December 20.

The parties in the valley are against the distribution of the seven new constituencies, owing to an imbalance of seats in favour of Jammu.

On Saturday, NC vice-president Omar Abdullah accused the administration of being “terrified” of normal political activity. Taking to Twitter he wrote, “Good morning & welcome to 2022. A new year with the same J&K police illegally locking people in their homes & an administration so terrified of normal democratic activity. Trucks parked outside our gates to scuttle the peaceful @JKPAGD sit-in protest. Some things never change.”

He added that the police have even locked the internal gate connecting his father’s home to his sister’s. “Yet our leaders have the cheek to tell the world that India is the largest democracy, hah!!,” he added.

PAGD vice-chairperson Mehbooba Mufti tweeted, “GOI trumpets scrapping Article 370 & dismembering J&K throughout the country but is deeply paranoid & intolerant when people of J&K want to protest against its disempowerment. For the umpteenth time, we’ve been placed under house arrest for trying to organise a peaceful protest.”

Meanwhile, scores of NC and People’s Democratic Party workers protested in different parts of Srinagar against the proposed delimitation draft as well as the detention of their party leadership ahead of the sit-in.

Barring BJP, all political parties in the valley have termed the delimitation draft as “totally unacceptable”. The J&K Reorganisation Act provided for the addition of seven new constituencies in J&K following the splitting of the former state into two union territories.

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