Main demand should be special status, not statehood: Ruhullah Mehdi

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National Conference chief spokesperson and three-time former legislator Aga Ruhullah has said the restoration of statehood should be the last demand.

This comes amidst the NC president and former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Omar Abdullah spelling out party’s policy of fighting Article 370 revocation in court and pressing for restoration of statehood to Jammu and Kashmir.

“What happened on 5 August, 2019 is beyond statehood and restoration of statehood should be the last demand,” Mr. Ruhullah was quoted as saying by The New Indian Express newspaper.

Talking to the newspaper,  Mr. Ruhullah, who is still under house arrest, said that Mr. Omar in an article has spelled out that Article 370 would be fought in court and restoration of statehood would be demanded.

The influential Shia leader who is also a former minister said what happened on August 5, 2019 is beyond statehood. “The restoration of statehood should be the least of the demands. It should be the last demand. Our main demand should be restoration of special status,” he said.

Mr. Ruhullah said the party vice president has spoken out and it is now the official line. “This should be the policy towards which NC will now move”.

Asked whether Omar’s policy is more of reconciliation towards Delhi, Mr. Ruhullah said, “If party’s central working committee endorses the same pattern, then it should be reconciliation. I hope the working committee strikes down any reconciliation. However, if the working committee endorses the same policy to move ahead, then it is a reconciliation unfortunately to which I personally may not subscribe to”


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