Delimitation Has To Happen So That Polls Can Happen In J&K: PM Modi

Prime Minister Narendra Modi held a three-and-a-half-hour-long meeting with 14 political leaders from Jammu and Kashmir at his residence in Delhi.

PM Modi held a meeting with leaders from Jammu and Kashmir on Thursday.

New Delhi:

The meeting with political leaders from Jammu and Kashmir was an important step towards development and progress, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Thursday, urging them to get on board with the process of redrawing assembly constituencies known as delimitation.

"Our priority is to strengthen grassroots democracy in J&K. Delimitation has to happen at a quick pace so that polls can happen and J&K gets an elected Government that gives strength to J&K's development trajectory," he tweeted.

"Our democracy's biggest strength is the ability to sit across a table and exchange views. I told the leaders of J&K that it is the people, specially the youth who have to provide political leadership to J&K, and ensure their aspirations are duly fulfilled," he wrote.

The statement came at the end of a three-and-a-half-hour-long meeting that the Prime Minister held with 14 political leaders from the region at his residence in Delhi.

It was the first such outreach of its kind since August 5, 2019 when the the centre scrapped Jammu and Kashmir's special status, split it into two union territories and put hundreds of leaders under detention to prevent unrest.

The revocation of Jammu and Kashmir's special status under Article 370 and its bifurcation into union territories of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh has been a major point of contention between the central government and the regional leaders.

The four former chief ministers of the erstwhile state who participated in the discussions were Farooq Abdullah and his son Omar Abdullah of the National Conference, Congress's Ghulam Nabi Azad and Peoples' Democratic Party chief Mehbooba Mufti.

Four former Deputy Chief Ministers were in attendance as well - Congress's Tara Chand, People's Conference leader Muzaffar Hussain Baig and BJP's Nirmal Singh and Kavinder Gupta.

CPI-M leader Mohammed Yusuf Tarigami, Jammu and Kashmir Apni Party (JKAP) chief Altaf Bukhari, Sajjad Lone of the People's Conference, J-K Congress head G A Mir, BJP's Ravinder Raina and Panthers Party leader Bhim Singh also formed part of the delegation.