Srinagar, Dec 28 (PTI) The National Conference (NC) on Monday accused the Jammu and Kashmir Apni Party (JKAP), led by former finance minister Altaf Bukhari, of using nasty methods to grab power in the valley by 'hook or crook', saying it has resorted to 'witch-hunting and intimidation' of the newly-elected DDC members.
Reacting to Bukhari's remarks that his party is aiming to have its chairpersons in at least six to seven district development councils with the help of independents and members of other parties who are 'willing' to cross over, NC spokesperson Imran Nabi Dar said the arithmetic does not support the JKAP in any case except by engineering defections.
'Having failed in all their plots, the Apni Party and its ilk used everything to benefit them in the DDC polls, but the people did not allow them any space. The way the 'king's party' president is claiming that he will form DDC councils in two to three districts in Kashmir reveals it all.
'The arithmetic does not support them in any case except by engineering defections. Having failed on that front also, they have now resorted to witch-hunting and intimidation,' he said.
Dar said the people gave a clear-cut mandate in favour of the People's Alliance for Gupkar Declaration (PAGD) in the DDC polls and the results attested to the universal acceptance of the alliance across Jammu and Kashmir.
'(But) far from accepting the defeat, the team 'B' of the BJP is using nasty methods to grab power in Kashmir by hook or crook,' he said.
Dar also rejected the 'coarse assertions' of the Apni Party president against the NC leadership as 'unfounded and baseless', and said the 'sordid remarks reeked of his frustration' on account of the people's rejection of the 'king's party' across Jammu and Kashmir.
'It is ironic that the party that comprises defectors and is responsible for engineering defections in other parties is giving lessons on democracy and ethics,' he said.
The NC leader said the same person, who has been serving the 'underhanded assignments' of New Delhi in Kashmir since 1984, has surfaced again to normalise the BJP's 'unconstitutional actions' of August 5, 2019 -- when the Centre revoked the special status of Jammu and Kashmir and bifurcated the erstwhile state into Union territories.
'Despite having full-fledged support from the powers that be, they were still not able to make a mark in the DDC polls,' he said.
Bukhari hit out at NC vice-president Omar Abdullah on Sunday, saying the former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister had started his political career in the lap of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
'If anyone has started his political career in the lap of the BJP, it is none other than Omar Abdullah. He was a Union minister in their government in 1998. The BJP made Mehbooba Mufti the chief minister of Jammu and Kashmir only days after she bagged votes to keep them away,' he said.
Rejecting the remarks, Dar said the NC was part of a bigger NDA, which was an amalgamation of various parties.
'We were part of a bigger NDA, which besides us had many other secular parties within its fold. The alliance was guided by a common minimum programme.
'Nevertheless, despite being a constituent of the NDA, we did not allow the BJP to set its foot in Jammu and Kashmir, not to talk of allowing it to fiddle with our status. We fought elections against the BJP in Jammu and Kashmir whilst being part of the NDA and were notably able to keep them at bay. We did not allow them to make inroads into Jammu and Kashmir,' he said. PTI SSB MIJ RC