BJP crossing 400 seats in Lok Sabha polls will be dangerous for Constitution: Omar Abdullah

SRINAGAR — National Conference vice president Omar Abdullah on Thursday said the BJP will not win 400 seats in the Lok Sabha elections and added the ruling party will keep revising its estimates with every passing phase of polling.

Speaking to reporters after a public meeting here, Abdullah said if the BJP crosses 400 seats in the polls, it would be dangerous for the Constitution.

“The Constitution was given to us by Baba Saheb Ambedkar. The BJP is fiddling with Baba Saheb Ambedkar’s inheritance in such a way that it is really regrettable. The people of the country should think about this,” he said.

Abdullah, the National Conference (NC) candidate from the north Kashmir seat, said the BJP’s estimates about the number of seats would drop with each phase of the polls.

“The talk of 400 seats was before the first phase. After two phases, perhaps the BJP is not talking about 400 seats anymore. As the phases progress, God willing, the numbers of their seats will decrease,” he said.

The former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister said that his party’s fight was “against Delhi, BJP and Nagpur”.

“This is a reality. In the previous elections, I fought against boycotts, I fought against guns and I fought against the circumstances of that time. But this time, Delhi has brought together all political parties here to defeat the NC,” said Abdullah.

“The postponement of (polls) on the Anantnag-Rajouri seat was done to benefit the Delhi and BJP. Our fight is not against any individual, it is against Delhi, BJP and Nagpur,” he added.

To a question about Union Home Minister Amit Shah’s remarks that the Congress was using the issues of the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and Article 370 as appeasement for minorities, Abdullah said the demand for the restoration of Article 370 was a reflection of genuine sentiment in Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh.

“As far as what the honourable Home Minister has said, no party remains in power indefinitely. As far as CAA or (Article) 370 was concerned, 370 was given to the state of J&K, not to a particular religion in J&K. The benefits of 370 were shared by the Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs, Buddhists, Christians, everybody,” Abdullah said.

“Today, the strongest voices for 370 type protection are actually coming from Ladakh. So, the return of 370 is not about appeasing the Muslims, it’s the reflection of genuine sentiment that exists in erstwhile J&K, including Ladakh,” he added.

On the issue of the candidate selection by the INDIA bloc from the Ladakh parliamentary seat, Abdullah said that his party was a part of the alliance and “will do its duty”.

“The NC is part of the INDIA bloc. Obviously, we hope that the Congress is able to resolve this situation and a suitable candidate is put forward. I am not getting into the tussle about which side the Congress should support. The NC as part of the alliance will do its duty,” he said.

The NC vice president said the way the BJP leaders were targeting the minorities daily in their speeches is not good for the country.

“The election results will come on June 4, but after that we have to run the country for five years. How will you run the country like this by spreading hatred, especially when the PM claims to represent 1.4 billion people?” Abdullah asked.

“During the elections at least 14 per cent of the population should not be ignored. They talk about ‘sabka saath, sabka vikaas’, but unfortunately they forget these things during the elections,” he added. — (PTI)