Thursday, March 17, 2011

The Hindu : States / Other States : Uproar in J&K Assembly over interlocutors’ report, Opposition walks out

The Hindu : States / Other States : Uproar in J&K Assembly over interlocutors’ report, Opposition walks out

Jammu and Kashmir Assembly was today rocked by protests by opposition BJP, JKNPP and JSM members, who staged a walkout over the issue of interlocutors reportedly suggesting to the Centre for restoration of posts of Prime Minister and President in the State.

During the Zero Hour, National Panthers Party (JKNPP) leader Harshdev Singh drew the attention of Speaker Mohammad Akbar Lone towards media reports about the Centre-appointed interlocutors’ recommendation on restoration of posts of Wazir-e-Azam (Prime Minister) and Sadar-e-Riyasat (President), which had been sought by the ruling National Conference to allow greater autonomy to the State.

Following this, opposition members including from BJP led by its Legislative Party Leader Chaman Lal Gupta, JKNPP and JSM protested against the report terming it as “anti-India” and accused the interlocutors of crossing their mandate.

Ruling NC in Jammu and Kashmir is demanding greater autonomy which also includes restoration of pre-1953 status of Prime Minister and President as a solution to the Kashmir issue.

“You cannot turn the clock back to pre-1953. We condemn such a report. It is anti-national and anti-India,” Mr. Singh said in the House.

Meanwhile, NC Legislator Shameema Firdous said, “Let us see which way the clock goes after the submission of the report.”

This sparked another wave of protest by opposition members who created ruckus in the House and later staged a walkout in protest.

“We will oppose such a recommendation,” Mr. Singh said.

“We want full and final integration of Jammu and Kashmir with rest of the India,” he said, warning that there would be serious repercussions if the Centre thinks on the lines of the interlocutors.

Lashing at the interlocutors and the Centre, BJP Legislator Ashok Khajuria told reporters that any such move would not be tolerated by the people of Jammu region and it would be fought tooth and nail.

“Jammu and Kashmir is an integral part of India. We do not believe in two Prime Ministers and two Constitutions,” Mr. Khajuria said.

“We condemn it as ‘anti-India’ and ‘anti-national’ recommendation and also interlocutors who have crossed the lines of their mandate,” he said.

Some newspapers had earlier carried reports about interlocutors recommending to re-instate the posts of Prime Minister and President instead of Chief Minister and Governor.

Keywords: Jammu and Kashmir, Interlocutors, Opposition

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