Omar challenges Azad to contest polls against him

Abdullah expressed his disappointment with Azad, accusing him of resorting to media attacks instead of actively engaging in the electoral process….reports Asian Lite News

National Conference Vice President Omar Abdullah has issued a direct challenge to Democratic Progressive Azad Party (DPAP) Chairman Ghulam Nabi Azad, urging him to contest against him in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections. Abdullah’s remarks come in response to Azad’s recent criticisms of the NC, accusing him of aligning with the BJP.

Speaking to reporters during a roadshow in Doda, Abdullah expressed his disappointment with Azad’s approach, accusing him of resorting to media attacks instead of actively engaging in the electoral process. Abdullah questioned Azad’s sincerity and political influence, daring him to step into the electoral arena to test his support base.

The rift between Abdullah and Azad, once considered allies, has widened in recent times, with Abdullah lamenting Azad’s apparent alignment with the BJP. Abdullah reiterated his party’s commitment to public welfare and accused the DPAP of serving BJP interests instead of prioritizing the needs of the people.

Abdullah seized the opportunity to remind the public of the BJP’s controversial decision to revoke Article 370, a move that reclassified Jammu and Kashmir as two Union Territories. He criticized the BJP’s failure to deliver on promises of development and job creation, particularly in regions like the Chenab valley, where Azad wields considerable influence.

Notably, Abdullah, a former chief minister of Jammu and Kashmir, is set to contest the elections from the Baramulla constituency. Additionally, he is throwing his support behind Choudhary Lal Singh, an INDIA bloc candidate, in the Chenab valley—a strategic move aimed at challenging Azad’s dominance in the region.

‘Omar only a ‘tourist’ in J&K’

Azad on Monday termed National Conference Vice President and former CM Omar Abdullah a “tourist” in J&K.

Addressing a public meeting in Doda town, Azad said that Omar Abdullah spends summer in London and winters in some other country and that he is not familiar with the politics of J&K.

His statement came in the wake of Omar Abdullah’s remarks that Azad’s party had been reduced to a party of only the Kathua-Udhampur Lok Sabha constituency.

“Omar Sahib, had you been in India, you would have come to know. You visit your maternal grandfather’s house during summers in London and some hot country during the winters and you come here as a tourist. As the Chief Minister, Omar Abdullah used to visit Chenab Valley for five minutes and didn’t visit the area even once during the last few years,” Azad said.

“Have you seen his face in Doda, Bhaderwah, and Kishtwar during his tenure as the CM? Has he been here for the last 10 years?” Azad asked, terming Omar Abdullah’s present visits to villages and rural areas as ruses to deceive the people once again.

The DPAP has fielded former minister G.M.Saroori as its candidate in the Kathua-Udhampur seat, which comprises Doda, Kishtwar, and Bhaderwah too.

Union Minister Dr Jitendra Singh of the BJP is seeking re-election from this constituency for the third time, while Chaudhary Lal Singh of the Congress is also in the fray.

The constituency goes to vote on April 19 in the first phase of the Lok Sabha polls.

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