Syed Ali Gilani calls for election boycott in Kulgam

SRINAGAR (Web Desk): Chairman All Parties Hurriyat Conference Syed Ali Gilani on Sunday urged people to boycott election and shutdown in Kulgam district tomorrow (Monday).

In a statement issued from Srinagar, he said that the poll boycott had frustrated the Indian leadership which could be well read from the Indian Prime Minister Narenda Modi’s speech.

He hit out at Indian PM over his anti-Kashmir remarks saying that Jammu and Kashmir is an internationally recognized dispute and can’t be changed by such false and arrogant statements.

“According to the UN’s resolution occupied Kashmir is a disputed area”, he added.

He termed Narendra Modi’s ‘Kashmir is an integral part of India’ remarks as a cruel joke.

Polls are half done for 543 seats in the lower house of Parliament. The voting over seven phases ends May 19, with counting scheduled for May 23.

The voting is staggered to facilitate movement of security forces to oversee an orderly election and avoid vote fraud.

Election promises

The election is seen as a referendum on Modi’s five-year rule. He has adopted a nationalist pitch trying to win the majority Hindu votes by projecting a tough stance against Pakistan.

So far, the BJP has aggressively pushed Modi’s national security record as it seeks to offset the opposition’s charges of economic mishandling, inadequate jobs creation and widespread farm distress.

“I think job creation, sustainable development, and communal harmony should be the top priorities for the upcoming government,” said Ubaidullah Mohyideen, 26, who voted in Kerala’s Wayanad, one of the two seats that Gandhi is contesting.

The opposition is challenging Modi for a high unemployment rate of 6.1 per cent and farmers’ distress aggravated by low crop prices.

Modi has used Kashmir to pivot away from his economic record, playing up the threat of rival Pakistan, especially after the Pulwama attack, in a bid to appear a strong, uncompromising leader on national security.

Opposition parties have consistently said that Modi and his party leaders are digressing from the main issues such as youth employment and farmers’ suicides.