Chief minister and National Conference working president Omar Abdullah on Friday addressed a massive election rally in Pattan and said that contrary to what propagandists and saboteurs had been desperately propagating till now, the National Conference was poised for a historic victory in the ensuing assembly elections.
Asking people of Pattan to vote in large numbers in favour of NC Candidate Aga Syed Mehmood, Omar said that the overwhelming response of the people of Pattan to NC had made the party's victory from here a foregone conclusion.
"Today those who spent the last six years in disrupting the legislative assembly, in spreading myths and in trying their best to create a perception of anti-incumbency have been pushed into a corner by a sweeping popular groundswell of support in favour of the National Conference. The writing on the wall is clear - National Conference is poised for a historic victory in these elections and this would be a victory for every single self-respecting, patriotic and proud citizen of Jammu and Kashmir. The NC has always risen to the occasion and given a surprise to its opponents in the face of adversity and this time around our cadre has yet again succeeded in effecting a tremendous mobilisation of support in favour of our party. Just like in almost all other parts of the Valley, it has become evident that the NC's victory in Pattan is now a foregone conclusion," the NC working president said while addressing a massive election rally at Pattan in favor of Aga Syed Mehmood.
Omar said that Pattan had been exploited and blackmailed for far too long at great costs to development in the region and the time had come for the people of Pattan to enforce their power to bring about a positive change here. "To think that the people of Pattan will forever surrender their rights and dreams of progress and be exploited and juiced for votes would be to trivialise your inherent power to lead Pattan towards a new future. You deserve roads at par with the rest of the state, you deserve round-the-clock electricity and you deserve the very best of health centres and government schools and I assure you that with Aga Syed Mehmood as your elected leader and with National Conference in government with a clear mandate, I will change the face of Pattan within a year. Unemployment in Pattan is higher than in other places because of a prolonged period of lacklustre governance at the local representative's level and the time has come to elect Aga Syed Mehmood and then hold him accountable for addressing all your grievances," Omar Abdullah added.
Addressing another public meeting in Balhama, Sonawar while lashing out at the BJP for trying to intimidate the people of Kashmir through their media blitz and unaccounted spending, Omar Abdullah said no amount of television ads could make the people of Kashmir compromise on their integrity and dignity. "Prime Minister Narendra Modi is going to hold a public meeting in Srinagar soon. The party has deputed hundreds of political matchmakers to Kashmir to rope in stooges and political mercenaries for this event.
While the Prime Minister addresses his gathering in Srinagar, he should be very clear about one fact - the hearts of Kashmiris are smoldering due to the comments made about Muslims by a minister of state in his government just a few days back. I also hope the BJP takes this opportunity to rise above its over-abused, ad nauseam rhetoric and finally takes a stand on two things - Article 370 and the revocation of AFSPA.
Till now BJP has taken different stands on these issues in different regions of the state. While the BJP wants a debate on Article 370, they should also know that the only debate on Article 370 can be on the restoration of the Article to its original, pre-1953 form", Omar Abdullah further said.
Omar asked the people to continue voting in large numbers as this was the only weapon in their hands to protect their political dignity and safeguard their state from those who want to fragment it, humiliate its people and rob them of our sense of collective identity. He reiterated his dream to develop Sonawar as a model constituency which would become a hallmark for tourism, handicrafts and hospitality avenues in the entire world.
NC Candidate from Pattan, Aga Syed Mehmood, also addressed the election rally in Pattan and said that the development of Pattan was his foremost priority.