Srinagar, Dec 11, (IANS) Jammu and Kashmir National Conference Vice President, Omar Abdullah, on Monday said that he and the party were prepared for a long battle for the restoration of Article 370.
He added that the party's struggle for the same would continue and described the Supreme Court's decision on the abrogation of Article 370 as disappointing.
Omar Abdullah, while streaming live on X said: “The Supreme Court has affirmed the abrogation of Article 370 and the bifurcation of Jammu and Kashmir into two Union Territories today. We were not expecting such a verdict. We were hoping for justice for the people of Jammu and Kashmir from the highest court of the country. Unfortunately, we could not convince the five-Bench judges of the SC, but I can say with certainty that we could not have done more than that.
“The fact is that our opponents also admitted that the National Conference left no stone unturned to defend the case and we could not have expected our lawyers Kapil Sibal and Gopal Subramanium to present our case in a better way.
“In this moment of collective despair, we apologise to the people of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh and to those in the country who wanted us to succeed in this fight.”
Reiterating his determination to continue the struggle for the restoration of the constitutional and democratic rights of the people of Jammu and Kashmir, he said, “I want to tell the people that the matter does not end here, our efforts will not end here. Apart from the court, our position has always been that this is a political fight, a constitutional fight, a fight within the realm of law.
“There have been some judgments, where the Supreme Court gave its verdict exactly opposite to today's verdict. Earlier a three-judge Bench had said that Article 370 has acquired permanent status after the dissolution of the Constituent Assembly. The Sampat Prakash judgment is a case in point.”
He further said, “Today the five-judge Bench changed the decision of a three-judge Bench. It is possible that another Bench will change the decision of these five judges in the future.
“As far as politics is concerned, did the BJP stop its efforts after the Supreme Court's decision in the Sampat Prakash case? No, they didn’t. To achieve what the BJP started in 1950 and after more than 70 years they were successful. We will also continue our efforts, we will not stop. We will continue our struggle by adopting constitutional and democratic methods in a peaceful way, with the hope that if not today, then tomorrow, a situation will arise in the country when we can regain what has been taken away from us.”
He added, “I want to assure our people that indeed we failed today, but we are not hopeless. We will not budge and will continue our struggle for restoration of our rights.”
He also congratulated the people of Jammu and Kashmir for their steadfastness and patience.
“I take this opportunity to congratulate the people of Jammu and Kashmir for their steadfastness and patience, especially after the events of August 5, 2019. They did not let the situation and environment deteriorate. They did not take the law into their own hands. I hope and pray we continue to adopt a similar plan in the future, because this fight is not a fight for a day, a week or maybe even a year, no one can say when we will reach our destination in this fight, but God willing we will reach the destination,” he said.
On other parts of the judgment, Omar said, “On election, return of statehood and the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, I will reserve my comments, because the election was never the primary issue for us, although the restoration of statehood is to some extent, but it is insignificant compared to Article 370. As far as the Truth and Reconciliation Commission is concerned, I have already spoken on it and will continue to do so.”
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