Apni Party President Altaf Bukhari on Tuesday urged Union Home Minister Amit Shah to announce assembly elections in Jammu and Kashmir and release prominent religious leaders including Mirwaiz Umar Farooq ahead of the Eid.
The Apni Party President made this appeal during a a meeting with the Union Home Minister in New Delhi.
“The discussions between the two leaders focused on a wide range of issues, aiming to enhance prevailing peace, foster development, improve governance, and address the political dynamics in
the region,” a party statement said.
During the meeting, Bukhari provided a comprehensive appraisal to Shah regarding the existing state of peace and harmony in Jammu and Kashmir.
He told the Home Minister that J&K people have played a significant role in fostering and maintaining peace, demonstrating their commitment to a peaceful environment.
He also conveyed that the people are eager to contribute even more to strengthen the ongoing peace process, as they aspire to reap the benefits that come with an enhanced state of peace, the statement said.
However, Bukhari conveyed his urgent appeal to the Union Home Minister, stressing the need for New Delhi to take immediate Confidence-Building Measures (CBMs) to further bolster the prevailing public sentiment.
In particular, he recommended two significant actions: the release of prominent religious leaders ahead of the upcoming Eid celebration, and the timely announcement of assembly polls in the
Union Territory .
“The release of prominent religious leaders, including Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, Moulana Abdul Rasheed Dawoodi, and Moulana Mushtaq Ahmad Veeri, will further fill the environment with a spirit of positivity. These influential figures possess the ability to play an important role in helping eradicate social evils, including the prevailing drug abuse in the Valley. Furthermore, the long-awaited announcement of assembly polls in the region would instill a sense of political empowerment among the people. These measures would not only foster a positive atmosphere but will also signify the government’s commitment to empowering the people and upholding democratic processes in Jammu and Kashmir,” the Apni Party President conveyed to the Home Minister.
“Since Jammu and Kashmir has been experiencing an extended period of peace and harmony after
a considerable duration, it is an opportune moment to take proactive measures to strengthen democracy and enhance peace further in the region. It is primitive that people are not deprived of their constitutional right to choose their own representatives any longer,” Bukhari added.
Welcoming the Amarnath Yatra, which is beginning soon, Apni Party President informed the Home Minister that J&K people are eager to greet the pilgrims as this Yatra has always played a pivotal role in fostering religious harmony, strengthening cultural bonds, and yielding significant economic benefits for the people of Jammu and Kashmir.
The Apni Party comprising mostly legislators and former ministers was founded in March 2020,
eight months after the abrogation of Articles 370.