Separatists call for boycott of civic, panchayat polls in Jammu and Kashmir

Senior separatist leaders said New Delhi has never believed in empowering people of Jammu and Kashmir or the institutions there.

Published: 03rd September 2018 08:22 PM  |   Last Updated: 03rd September 2018 08:22 PM   |  A+A-

JKLF chief Yasin Malik (Photo | File/PTI)

Express News Service

SRINAGAR: With the Governor administration in Jammu and Kashmir announcing holding of Urban Local Bodies (ULB) and panchayat polls in the State from next month, the separatist leaders on Monday called for boycott of the polls.

Three senior separatist leaders Syed Ali Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Mohammad Yasin Malik met at Geelani's residence today to discuss the prevailing political situation in the State. "We want to convey to Government of India (GoI) the loud and clear message by people of Kashmir that they boycott any kind of participation in elections and instead only demand Right to self determination," said a joint statement issued by three separatist leaders after the meeting.

They said people of Kashmir know that when it comes to J&K, all power rests with New Delhi and all decisions flow from there. "In 70 years since 1947, J&K is a colony ruled by India. Each election that has been held in J&K from panchayat to parliament has only been a means to further strengthened that power centre and in turn New Delhi's hold on J&K, and steadily but surely weaken the sovereignty of the people of J&K".

"Any participation in these polls is propagated as peoples' verdict in favour of India and hence they are used as a means to dilute J&K disputed status and undo the holding of a referendum as promised by India at the UN. These elections only bring prosperity to an opportunist class of people whom India has patronized in Kashmir like snakes being fed milk, while selling these elections to the people of India and the world as an endorsement by people of J&K to Indian rule," said Geelani, Mirwaiz and Malik, who have come under united banner of "Joint Resistance Leadership".

They said New Delhi has never believed in empowering people of J&K or the institutions here, as "it knows that its connect with the state is neither legitimate nor moral but an outcome of manipulation's and broken promises."The state government has announced to hold election for municipal bodies in the State in four phases with polling dates between October 1 and October 5.The Panchayat election would be conducted in eight phases with polling dates between November 8 and December 4.

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