NC leaders calls for release of Farooq, Omar Abdullah

Srinagar: National Conference (NC) leader Devender Rana on Sunday sought the release of party president Farooq Abdullah and vice-president Omar Abdullah to kick-start the political process in Jammu and Kashmir
ahead of the Block Development Council (BDC) elections.

Speaking to media persons after meeting Farooq Abdullah, Rana said, “We, as a party, appeal that for the political process to start and democracy to revive in Jammu and Kashmir, the political detenures, who have no criminal record, must be released.”

Rana, who has been elected as party’s provisional president, called the detention of Abdullah under the Public Safety Act (PSA) “unfortunate”.

On being asked if his party will fight the BDC elections, scheduled to be held on October 24, Rana said, “Let them [Farooq and Omar Abdullah] be released first. Following this, the working committee, after due deliberation and discussion, will decide the future course of action.”

Earlier today, a 15 member delegation of the party met Abdullah at his residence in Srinagar. The party leaders are slated to meet his son Omar Abdullah later in the day. The father-son duo are under house arrest since the abrogation of Jammu and Kashmir’s special status.

“We are happy that they both are well and in high spirits. They are pained and anguished about the developments, particularly the lockdown of the people,” Rana asserted.

After the Central government decided to revoke the special constitutional status accorded to Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) under Article 370, two months ago, the region was placed under a communications blockade and several mainstream political leaders, including the father-son duo and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) chief Mehbooba Mufti were put under house arrest.

The meeting comes a day after the party was permitted by Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik to meet the duo.