New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: As the first anniversary of the abrogation of Article 370 of the Constitution nears, former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister and National Conference leader Omar Abdullah has hit out at the Narendra Modi government and said that he will not be a part of the J&K Assembly till the Union Territory's full statehood is not restored.

"Having been a member of the most empowered Assembly in the land and that, too, as the leader of that Assembly for six years, I simply cannot and will not be a member of a House that has been disempowered the way ours has," Abdullah wrote in an article published by The Indian Express.

On August 5, 2019, the Modi government had stripped the Jammu and Kashmir of its special status by revoking key sections of the Article 370 of the Constitution and jailed leaders, including Abdullah and another former CM Mehbooba Mufti, in anticipation of protests. While Mufti still remains in detention, Abdullah was freed in March this year after spending more than seven months in detention.

Speaking about the "humiliation" meted out to the people of Jammu and Kashmir following the abrogation of Article 370, the National Conference leader said that the then Kashmir Governor lied to the people of the state.

"The people were treated to categorical denials by the occupant of the highest office in the state, the Governor, that J&K’s special status faced no threat....Truth be told, the BJP pushing this wasn’t a complete surprise — it was part of its poll agenda for decades. What came as a shock was the humiliation heaped on the state by downgrading it and splitting it into two Union Territories," he said.

The former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister said that he still fails to understand the need of the Modi government's move to scrap the special status of Kashmir.

"If the reason for carving out a separate Union Territory for Ladakh was the public demand among the Buddhist population of the area, then the demand for a separate state for the people of Jammu is much older.

"If the demand was conceded on religious grounds, then it ignored the fact that Leh and Kargil districts, which together make up the Union Territory of Ladakh, are Muslim majority and the people of Kargil are vehemently opposed to the idea of being separated from J&K," he wrote in the English daily.

Posted By: Shashikant Sharma