Doubt PM gave assurance on article 35A to Mehbooba Mufti: Omar

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Srinagar, Aug 11 (IANS) Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah on Friday expressed doubts over his successor Mehbooba Mufti’s announcement that Prime Minister Narendra Modi had assured her on protecting the Constitution’s Article 35A which empowers the state legislature to declare permanent residents of the state and their privileges.

After her meeting with Modi in New Delhi on Friday, Mehbooba Mufti had told reporters the Prime Minister had assured her that Article 35A would be protected to preserve the special status of J&K.

In response, Abdullah said: “What she said is immaterial. What matters is what the PM said. That’s the only part of this meeting that matters at all.”

In another comment on his widely followed Twitter handle, he said: “Excuse us if we no longer believe what MehboobaMufti says after she comes out from these meetings. Can PMOIndia explain ‘assurances’ pls?”

Mehbooba Mufti had rushed to New Delhi on Thursday after a series of meeting with opposition leaders in the state including Abdullah’s father and former Chief Minister Farooq Abdullah and chief of state Congress G.A. Mir to discuss ways and means to protect Article 35A that has been challenged by an NGO through a petition in the Supreme Court.

She had met Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Thursday.

–IANS

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