National Conference leaders Devendra Singh Rana, Surjeet Salathia join BJP

Devendra Singh Rana, who was a key aide of former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister and National Conference leader Omar Abdulla, said he joined the BJP because of the party’s positive response to his efforts to set a “Jammu narrative”
Devendra Singh Rana said he joined the BJP because of the party’s positive response to his efforts to set a “Jammu narrative” through “Jammu Declaration”. (Photo Courtesy-BJP)
Devendra Singh Rana said he joined the BJP because of the party’s positive response to his efforts to set a “Jammu narrative” through “Jammu Declaration”. (Photo Courtesy-BJP)
Published on Oct 11, 2021 02:11 PM IST
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Former National Conference leaders from Jammu and Kashmir, Devendra Singh Rana and Surjeet Singh Salathia joined the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in New Delhi on Monday in the presence of Union ministers Hardeep Puri, Dharmendra Pradhan and Jitendra Singh. Rana and Singh are brothers.

Rana, who was a key aide of former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister and National Conference leader Omar Abdulla, said he joined the BJP because of the party’s positive response to his efforts to set a “Jammu narrative” through “Jammu Declaration” . Rana has been trying to bring Jammu region’s intellectuals, civil societies, leaders and members of trade & commerce together to further the interests of the region.

“ I pitched for the Jammu Declaration, which will be a voice of Jammu by Jammu for inclusive Jammu and Kashmir. It will defeat the votaries of the Dixon Plan who want to divide Jammu region on the basis of religion,” Rana said.

The Dixon Plan was proposed by Sir Owen Dixon, a United Nations’ representative who proposed assigning Ladakh to India, the northern areas and the Pakistan-Occupied Kashmir (POK) to Pakistan, splitting Jammu between the two, and recommended a plebiscite in the Kashmir Valley.

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Rana said he spoke to all political parties on the need for a political narrative emerging from Jammu and strengthening the ethos of Jammu and Kashmir and the country. “Time has come to have a Jammu narrative, a political narrative, after all it was the Dogras, it was maharaja Gulab Singh, who carved out the state,” he said.

Union minister Dharmendra Pradhan said the BJP has always ensured development of Jammu and Kashmir. “Their joining will give a fillip to the development works that began two years ago,” Pradhan said.

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Monday, May 23, 2022