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Omar Abdullah not to contest Assembly polls in Jammu and Kashmir till full statehood is restored

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Srinagar, July 27: Upset over downgrading of Jammu and Kashmir to the status of a Union Territory following abrogation of Article 370, former chief minister Omar Abdullah on Monday said he will not contest assembly elections till full statehood is restored. However, Omar made it clear he would continue to work for his party National Conference(NC) and people of Jammu and Kashmir.

Omar Abdullah

"I have been leader of the assembly of the state. In its time the most empowered assembly. I cannot and will not be a member of what is now one of the most disempowered assemblies in the country. It's as simple as that," Omar told a news agency.

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    Strongly critical of the dilution of Article 370 of the Constitution, Omar said many reasons had been given to justify abrogation of the provision that granted special status, and claimed that none of those stand any scrutiny.

    Omar, who is the vice president of the NC, was critical of what had been done to Jammu and Kashmir on August 5 last year, and said his party would oppose it in the Supreme Court.

    "The abrogation of Article 370 was supposed to end terrorism but the government had been telling Supreme Court that violence in Jammu and Kashmir was increasing," he said.

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