Ghulam Nabi Azad asks Centre to stop operating government from Delhi, demands immediate assembly elections in Jammu and Kashmir: Leader of Opposition and former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Ghulam Nabi Azad on Monday asked the Centre to stop operating government from New Delhi and hold immediate assembly elections in the state. Speaking in Rajya Sabha, Congress senior leader said that it is the need of the hour to transfer power in the people’s hand by conducting polls. He asserted that there will be 70 per cent polling in the elections.

Azad slammed the government for banning civilian traffic on the Srinagar-Jammu national highway during the passage of annual Amarnath Yatra pilgrims. The ban was imposed from Monday, July 1, and will remain in place for 46 days. The Jammu and Kashmir Trafic Police have issued an order, stating that no civilian vehicle shall be allowed to move on the 97-km stretch from Qazigund to Nashri, adding that only those vehicles which transport pilgrims will be allowed to move from 10 am to 3 pm. 

Senior Congress leader lauded the Muslims of Kashmir for making yatra a success and cautioned government for taking credit for the successful conduct of the pilgrimage. Azad said that it is not the government which must be credited for the success of yatra but people of Kashmir. He said that the government’s ban move will affect the local people who are ferrying Laks of Amarnath pilgrims. 

The former CM said that during any untoward incident, Muslims of the valley are the first who come to help yatris. He added that Kashmiris have not only rescued pilgrims but even donated blood for them. Meanwhile, Azad also paid rich tributes to the security force personnel who have lost their lives while protecting the country.

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