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Using Art 370 for Maharashtra, Haryana polls "unfortunate": Congress


Jammu, Oct 19: Under attack from top BJP leadership, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi, over Article 370, the Congress's Jammu and Kashmir unit on Saturday accused the saffron party of using it as a "political tool" for the upcoming Maharashtra and Haryana assembly polls.

The Congress said the urgency shown by the Centre to scrap the provisions of Article 370 which accorded special status to Jammu and Kashmir was "unfortunate".

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The Centre will not be able to delay for long the restoration of full statehood to Jammu and Kashmir, Pradesh Congress Committee chief spokesperson Ravinder Sharma said. Referring to the amendments made to Article 370 in the past, he asked what else is left in it that the BJP is using it as a political tool to contest the upcoming assembly polls in Maharashtra and Haryana.

On August 5, besides abrogating certain provisions of Article 370, the Centre announced the decision to bifurcate Jammu and Kashmir into two Union Territories, which will come into existence on October 31.

In a statement here, Sharma claimed that the way Article 370 was being used by the BJP it was clear that it was a "pre-planned" strategy of the ruling party. The urgency shown in doing away with certain provisions of Article 370, by abruptly ending the holy Amarnath Yatra in a disrespectful and deceitful manner, is very "unfortunate", he said.

The Congress leader said the BJP has failed to justify the decision to downgrade Jammu and Kashmir's status to Union Territory. He said if the Centre fails to restore full statehood to Jammu and Kashmir, the Jammu region too would adopt all "possible democratic modes" to seek fulfilment of aspirations of residents of the state in the near future.


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