June 2018 News

To Retrieve Lost Ground, BJP To Pitch For Its Core Agenda

20 June 2018
The Tribune (Chandigarh)
Dinesh Manhotra

Srinagar: After pulling out of the alliance in J&K, the BJP will go back to its core agenda, including the abolition of Article 370 and ending of 'discrimination' with the Jammu and Ladakh regions, to regain its lost ground in the state. A senior BJP leader said a campaign to return to the core agenda would start from June 23 when party national president Amit Shah is scheduled to address a function at Jammu to observe the death anniversary of Syama Prasad Mukherjee, the founder of Bharatiya Jana Sangh, the predecessor of the BJP. For a long, the party has been observing June 23 as a day to reiterate its commitment to abolition of Article 370. Mukherjee had died under mysterious circumstances in a Srinagar jail on June 23, 1953. 'Now we don't have coalition compulsion and the party leadership is free to aggressively pursue its core agenda on Kashmir,' a senior BJP leader, who wished not to be quoted, told The Tribune. He said, 'After Tuesday's development, the itinerary of Shah's visit will be changed. The party is seriously thinking about organising a rally apart from one indoor function.' Sources said during the meeting in Delhi, Shah exhorted party leaders to aggressively pursue the party's core agenda. They added that the BJP was going to aggressively take up issues, such as restoration of fundamental rights of West Pakistan refugees, solution to problems of refugees from Pakistan-occupied J&K, security of border residents and discriminatory attitude towards martyr soldiers from J&K. After the meeting, the state BJP leadership was asked to devise a strategy to launch an agitation on contentious issues which the party had failed to resolve despite being in the government. While formulating the Agenda of Alliance to form the coalition with the PDP in 2015, the BJP had abandoned its contentious issues. However, the party leadership had even failed to resolve even those matters on which both the coalition partners had agreed.