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Ready to contest polls if troops withdrawn: Geelani

Written by: Staff

Srinagar, Apr 9: The hardline faction of the Hurriyat Conference led by Syed Ali Shah Geelani has said it is ready to take part in the elections if India withdraws troops from Jammu and Kashmir and declare the state as a no-military zone.

''We are ready to participate in the elections to ascertain the views of the people provided India India withdraws troops from Jammu and Kashmir and declared the state as a no-military zone,'' the breakaway Hurriyat Conference said in a statement here.

''We are not against the elections, but there is military rule in Kashmir. People live under the shadow of gun and the elections hold no meaning,'' the Hurriyat alleged.

It said Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad, National Conference President Omar Abdullah, Peoples Democratic Party Chief Mehbooba Mufti and CPI(M) leader Mohammad Yusuf Tarigami were all one.

''They fool the people during elections. Nowadays, Mehbooba Mufti says Jammu and Kashmir's accession with India is conditional. Why didn't she remember it when her father (Mufti Mohammad Sayeed) was in power? They fool people with their slogans of healing touch and self rule,'' the statement said.

On Srinagar-Muzaffarabad bus service, which completed one year of its run on April 7, the hardline Hurriyat said the bus was being run over the sacrifices of the people of Jammu and Kashmir.

''The aim of launching the bus was to send the Kashmir issue in cold storage,'' it added.


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