J&K DDC polls: BJP accuses Gupkar Alliance of deceiving people; NC hits back, asks saffron party to focus on development

The National Conference said since the BJP leaders cannot talk about what they have done in the last six years, they are harping on issues which do not pertain to the development of panchayats

Press Trust of India December 06, 2020 00:38:15 IST
J&K DDC polls: BJP accuses Gupkar Alliance of deceiving people; NC hits back, asks saffron party to focus on development

File image of Anurag Thakur. AFP

Jammu: Ahead of the fourth phase of District Development Council (DDC) polls in Jammu and Kashmir, Union ministers Smriti Irani and Anurag Thakur on Saturday launched a blistering attack on People's Alliance for Gupkar Declaration (PAGD), saying the parties have come together to deceive people and are facing an existential crisis.

The National Conference hit back at the BJP leaders and said since they cannot talk about what they have done in the last six years, they are harping on the issues which do not pertain to the development of panchayats.

Addressing a series of election rallies in Samba and Jammu districts, Union minister for textiles and women and child development Irani said the Gupkar Alliance members have come together to deceive the people of Jammu and Kashmir.

"In this election time, the Gupkar 'gang' is just deceiving the people. They never came together to benefit the public but only came together for their own power hunger. They never came together to provide food, toilet, and other basic facilities to the needy," she said.

The PAGD was formed by seven mainstream parties including the National Conference and the PDP to press for the restoration of the pre-5 August, 2019, position to Jammu and Kashmir.

The alliance is headed by National Conference president Farooq Abdullah and PDP's chief Mehbooba Mufti is its vice-chairperson. The BJP has been targeting it by calling it the Gupkar gang. Seeking votes for the party candidates, Irani said it was the BJP which is facilitating the maiden DDC elections in J-K as its goal is the welfare of the commoners.

Addressing separate election rallies in different parts of Reasi district, Thakur, who is BJP's in-charge of DDC elections in Jammu and Kashmir and camping here, said the Gupkar "gang" is facing an existential crisis.

"The Gupkar 'gang' is disconnected from ground realities and should look beyond their palatial estates to see the winds of change in Jammu and Kashmir. Their attempts to bully, attack and disrupt the democratic process have met with stiff opposition from the common people of Jammu and Kashmir, who want to oust the Gupkar gang once and for all," he said.

The Union minister of state for finance expressed satisfaction over the turnout in the first three phases of the DDC elections, and said, "Previously, we have seen how they (PAGD) discouraged citizens from participating in the electoral process. They created an atmosphere of fear. The voting percentage was barely 3-5 percent and today the Kashmir region gets 35-40 percent voter turnout. This is because people are fed up and reposing their faith in Prime Minister Narendra Modi's politics of hope and development for J&K," he said.

"Their politics of hate and harbouring separatists is over, the frustration of the Gupkar gang is at their peak," he said. He said the BJP believes in the politics of development for all, decisive action, and democracy.

"We will bring employment and entrepreneurship to the youth, we will bring investment and innovation for businesses and we will propel local produce of farmers and artisans to the global level so that the region reaps economic benefits," Thakur said.

Hitting back at the BJP over its tirade against the PAGD leaders, National Conference provincial president Devender Singh Rana said, "Their performance card is blank and they cannot talk about what they have done in the last six years, so they are harping on the issues which do not pertain to the development of the panchayats."

"Let them come out with a white paper on development undertaken and jobs provided to the educated unemployed youth in the past six years," Rana said, adding the BJP cannot get away from answering to the people, as they feel let down, degraded, humiliated and left in the lurch during the past six years.

"The promises made were never kept and, in fact, the normal course of development was also put in the rear gear, as the self-centered agenda remained the top priority," he said.

"The insult to the injury is that the BJP is again hoodwinking the people by emotive slogans, forgetting its role on the administrative and developmental front. This is brazen and speaks of the hypocrisy that is the core of the BJP," he added.

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