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Not holding Assembly election in J&K was a matter of grave concern: Azad

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Srinagar: Democratic Progressive Azad Party (DPAP) Chairman Ghulam Nabi Azad on Saturday said that by not holding the assembly election in Jammu and Kashmir was a matter of grave concern.

Addressing a party rally in Srinagar, Azad said it was unfortunate that elections were not being held despite J&K being “normal”.

“It has been nine years since the last election. This is perhaps for the first time in J&K’s history that elections did not take place for such a long time. When the situation was bad, there was bloodshed, and leaders left the valley, Kashmiri Pandits left the valley, that time also, elections took place after five to six years,” the former Chief Minister said.

He said when the situation is normal here it is surprising that the polls are not being conducted.

“It has not been more normal than this in the last 30-35 years, and still elections have not taken place in the last nine years. This is a matter of grave concern. What is the disadvantage of not conducting an election? The administration is doing its job, but this is not its job (holding election) ,” the former Congress leader said.

“I am not saying that Lt. Governor is not doing his work, or officers are not doing their work, but we are asking them to do such a job which is not theirs. That is the job of ministers, MLAs, and elected representatives. … An elected MLA or a chief minister reaches everywhere, roams among the people, asking people about their issues. That does not happen now, because an officer is not for that, he is for running the office,” the DPAP Chairman said.

Later talking to reporters, Azad said that he and his colleagues have addressed 2000 meetings, in which they have always demanded that elections are necessary here as only legislators can serve the people.

On the Palestine -Israel conflict, the former CM said the powerful countries, who can restore peace and calm, have not got involved in it.

“Gaza has been made the world’s biggest prison. The powerful countries could have intervened, but since they are not, we can only pray,” he said.

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