Statehood should not be Linked with Polls: Sajjad Lone

People’s Conference chief Sajjad Lone has said that restoration of statehood should not be linked with the conduct of elections and that boycotting elections has never yielded any results. Lone, who participated in the meeting called by PM Modi along with others in Delhi last month, said his party would participate in the meetings with the delimitation panel, if invited, during the commission’s visit to J&K from July 6 to 9.

“Left to me I would say statehood should be delivered right now. Not as a matter of charity but as a matter of right…But I would not link elections and statehood,” said Lone, in his first presser here in Srinagar.

“Boycotting elections has yielded no results…keeping away the opponents could be a trap. We have boycotted elections for 15-20 years. What if it is a trap to scare away all the good people and bring in their proxies?…the leadership would have to look at both sides…knee jerk reaction won’t work,” said Lone, a former minister in the PDP-BJP government in J&K.

“I will not say that I will boycott the elections and the party will contest. We are all equal. I’m not superior to them. If something is haram (forbidden) for me, it is haram for them too,” said Lone, in an oblique reference to Mehbooba Mufti and Omar Abdullah.

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