Modi must unite India, not divide it: Farooq Abdullah

Srinagar, Dec 4 : Calling on Narendra Modi to stop fooling people by trying to create hype over Article 370, union Minister Farooq Abdullah Wednesday said the BJP's prime ministerial candidate must think of uniting India, not dividing it, if he wants to lead it.

Talking to reporters on the sidelines of a function here, Abdullah, a former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister, said: "Whether it is Narendra Modi or anybody else, nobody can abrogate Article 370, which is here today and would be here tomorrow."

"I am sad that in order to fool people, Narendra Modi is speaking of issues like Article 370. If he wants to become the prime minister of India, he must think of uniting India and not of dividing it," he said.

Abdullah also said the Bharatiya Janata Party had been talking of building the Ram temple, but had not been able to do so till today.

He, however, refused to accept that Modi had attacked the Abdullah family during his speech in Jammu Sunday.

"The Abdullah family is here today and it will continue to be here tomorrow," he asserted.

Asked whether his National Conference would fight the forthcoming Lok Sabha and assembly elections in alliance with the Congress, Abdullah said: "This is an issue the National Conference would decide at its working committee meeting at the appropriate time."

He said whether the Lok Sabha and the state assembly polls should be held simultaneously in Jammu and Kashmir would also be decided at a later stage.

Replying to another question about Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif raking up the Kashmir issue, the elder Abdullah said Sharif was doing so to remain in power in his country.

"Yes, we have said Kashmir is an issue that needs to be settled through dialogue by the two countries, but rest assured there would be no fourth war between the two countries over this issue," Abdullah said, referring to Sharif's reported statement that Kashmir was an issue and could provide a flashpoint for the fourth war between Pakistan and India.

--IANS (Posted on 04-12-2013)

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