Jammu and Kashmir chief minister and National Conference (NC) leader Omar Abdullah has offered to step down from his post in the wake of the party’s debacle in the Lok Sabha election.
According to sources, Omar made the offer during a ‘core committee’ meeting held at his Gupkar residence on Monday. The offer, however, had no takers in the party, the sources added.
“If he resigns at this moment, there will be utter chaos,” said an NC leader, who did not want to be named.
The core committee meeting, attended by the party’s top leaders, was to discuss the party’s performance in the elections and its future strategy for upcoming assembly polls.
In a severe setback to the party, the NC candidates were defeated by the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) nominees in all the three Lok Sabha constituencies in the valley. Even NC president and union minister Farooq Abdullah lost to PDP’s Tariq Hameed Karra in Srinagar by over 40,000 votes. This is the first-ever electoral defeat for Abdullah.
Sources said the party members felt that the 2010 killings and the “out-of-turn” execution of Mohammad Afzal Guru, the convict in the Parliament terror attack case, were the primary reasons behind NC’s defeat.
In fact, Omar had accepted these two factors as the reasons for defeat at a press conference held after the poll results were announced.
In a bid to bounce back, the NC has already started reaching out to people. Omar has given his designated e-mail ID where people can give him feedback. Writing on micro-blogging site ‘twitter’, the CM has said that he has received over 1,000 emails from people giving reasons for the party’s poor performance.
The NC will hold a meeting of block presidents on Tuesday at its party headquarters in Nawa-i-Subah complex to seek feedback.