Congress boycotts BDC polls in Jammu and Kashmir, cites detention
The Congress on Wednesday announced a boycott of the Block Development Council (BDC) polls in Jammu and Kashmir on October 24, citing the continued detention of political leaders. “The Congress believes in strengthening democratic institutions and it has never shied away from any polls. But today, we are compelled to take a decision to boycott the BDC polls due to the indifferent attitude of the state administration and the continued detention of senior party leaders in the Valley,” J&K Congress chief Ghulam Ahmed Mir said.
Former chief ministers Farooq Abdullah, Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti are under detention since August when the Centre moved to revoke J&K’s special status and split the state into two Union territories.
Mir, who was released from house arrest in Jammu last week, accused the state administration of deliberately creating hurdles for the political parties in the state to facilitate the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)’s victory in the BDC polls.
National Conference’s provincial president Devender Singh Rana said, “Nearly 60% of members of our parliamentary board is under detention. Under these circumstances, how can one think of taking part in the polls?”
People Democratic Party general secretary Ved Mahajan said, “Our party president Mehbooba Mufti...So we are uncertain about our participation.”