Agreeing that coalition always is a compulsion, Provincial President Devender Singh Rana on Tuesday said the decision with regard to pre or post poll alliance in the ensuing Lok Sabha and Assembly elections will be taken by the National Conference High Command.
However, Mr Rana quipped that the party workers and functionaries have all along been pitching for going to polls independently keeping in view the premier character of National Conference in Jammu and Kashmir politics.
“You must understand that National Conference is the only party which can claim of having its existence in all the three regions”, Mr Rana said in an interaction with a group of journalism students from Delhi, currently on a visit to Jammu, today. He added that this position cannot be compromised, come what may.
When asked by a student to comment over the recent observations of some Congress leaders regarding poll alliance, the Provincial President said that he had no comment to offer but said that the National Conference workers at the grass root level are of the opinion that entering into any sort of alliance will jeopardize the larger interests of the party.
He elaborated and said that the National Conference Working Committee has authorized President Dr Farooq Abdullah and Chief Minister Omar Abdullah to take a final call on this important issue and whatever their decision is, that will be final for us because we are a disciplined cadre.
To a question about the synergy between NC and Congress High Command during the past five years, Mr Rana said that it has been perfect and the government has functioned very smoothly and the Centre, especially Congress President Sonia Gandhi and Vice President Rahul Gandhi, have been receptive to the State’s special requirements in view of the circumstances it has undergone during the past over two decades.
“In fact, the Congress high command has reposed immense faith in Mr Omar Abdullah’s capable leadership”.
On being asked about the allegations of corruption against coalition ministers, the Provincial President said the Chief Minister is very clear in his stand that any of his colleagues found involved in acts of omission and commission or impropriety in public life will be tackled appropriately.
“As far as the Chief Minister is concerned, his worst critics also acknowledge his integrity. His image is clean and without any stain”, he said, adding that the Chief Minister has always stood for transparency, accountability and probity in public life.
“As and when matters of corruption pertaining to political executives have been brought before him, he lost no time in taking action”, the Provincial President said.
On a specific question put forth by some students about Congress activists agitating over incorporation of 73rd and 74th amendment of the Constitution in Panchayat Raj Act, Mr Rana said, “this is unfortunate; it is not in line with coalition Dharma; the issues, if any, are not settled on the streets, they should be discussed and are being discussed at the appropriate level”.
“National Conference and Congress are running this government together and our report card of five years is before the people. For all good that has happened both the parties must share the credit and shortcomings if any are also the responsibility of both and they should be overcome in the days to come”, he maintained.