Officials wanted to manipulate J&K poll: Advani
23 April 2003
The Hindustan Times
PTI and HTC
New Delhi: Deputy Prime minister LK Advani on Wednesday disclosed that the Centre had rejected a suggestion of 'some officials' prior to the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly polls that it should 'direct the results in a certain manner'. Winding up a debate on the working of the home ministry in the Rajya Sabha, he said 'there was advice given to me by some officials that the government could not be indifferent to what was happening to Jammu and Kashmir which is a very sensitive state. 'Therefore, the Government of India should be concerned about what is happening there and should direct the results in a certain manner,' he said.Terming free, fair and transparent Assembly polls in the state as a 'turning point', he said this has now restored the Centre's credibility as it rejected the suggestion of those officials whom he did not name. He claimed he could now take the House into confidence since the elections were over and reveal apprehensions of senior officials who had suggested that elections in Kashmir should be directed in a certain manner. Advani said certain decisions in the past by the Centre had distanced the people of Kashmir from New Delhi.