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Azad Forms New Party, Calls For Restoration Of J&K Statehood

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By: Shabeer Ahmad | JAMMU
Updated: September 4, 2022 18:21
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Ending all speculations former Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad on Sunday announced that he will form a new party and will fight for the restoration of the statehood of Jammu and Kashmir.

Addressing his first rally after leaving Congress, Azad said that his ‘national-level’ party would be focused on upcoming J&K polls. “New party formed will be launched on a national-level. But we are in no hurry for national aspirations. We will start from Jammu and Kashmir,” he said at the rally in Jammu.

While attacking Congress, he said the party had lost its touch ‘on the ground’. “Congress was made by us, by our blood, not by computers, not by Twitter. People are trying to defame us but their reach is limited to computers and tweets. That is the reason Congress is nowhere seen on the ground,” he said.

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Azad said that the party would be a reality on the political map of Jammu and Kashmir ahead of the next Assembly elections which are likely to be held after the completion of the ongoing process of special summary revision of the electoral rolls on November 25.

Ending his five-decade-long association with the Congress on August 26, Azad termed the party “comprehensively destroyed” and lashed out at Rahul Gandhi for “demolishing” its entire consultative mechanism.

The 73-year-old leader quit the Congress days after he rejected a post in the party’s Jammu and Kashmir unit, saying his recommendations for appointments had been ignored. His exit prompted a mass exodus of Congress leaders from the party’s Jammu and Kashmir unit.

Azad quit the Congress, a party he has been associated with for over five decades on August 26, terming the party “comprehensively destroyed”.

Since Azad’s resignation, a flurry of top leaders and executives have quit the party and vowed to extend their support to Azad. Former deputy chief minister, eight former ministers, a former MP, nine legislators, a large number of Panchayati Raj Institution (PRI) members, municipal corporators and grassroots workers from across Jammu and Kashmir have all jumped ship and joined the Azad camp.

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