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Pro-Article 370 Gupkar Alliance to meet Modi on Thursday

The People’s Alliance for Gupkar Declaration will attend the all-party meeting convened by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi on Thursday.

The announcement came after PAGD leaders met at Farooq Abdullah’s Gupkar Road residence in Srinagar to discuss the Centre’s invitation to leaders from Jammu and Kashmir.

“We have received the invitation from the prime minister and we are going to attend (the meeting),” Abdullah, who was flanked by other leaders of the alliance, told reporters after the meeting.

Fourteen leaders from Jammu and Kashmir have been invited to the meeting to be chaired by the prime minister to discuss the future course of action for the disputed region.

The meeting is the first such exercise since India announced the abrogation of Jammu and Kashmir’s special status under Article 370 of the Constitution and its bifurcation into union territories on August 5, 2019.

The PAGD chairperson said the alliance was confident it would be able to put its stand before the prime minister and Home Minister Amit Shah during the meeting.

“When the meeting ends, we will brief you here as well as in Delhi on what we did there, what we said and what was their response,” the former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister and National Conference president said.

Asked what would be the stand of the alliance, Abdullah said, “You all know our stand and there is no need to repeat it.” “Whatever our stand was, is still there and will be there,” he added.

The PAGD is a six-party alliance of mainstream parties that came into existence after the Centre revoked the special status of Jammu and Kashmir under Article 370.

Abdullah said all those invited will attend the meeting.

“(PDP chief) Mehbooba Ji, me, (CPI-M leader) Tarigami Sahab and all those who have been invited from us (the alliance), will go,” he said.

As the invitation is to individual leaders of various parties “they all will go and all will speak there”, the NC leader added.

Asked about the agenda of the meeting, Abdullah said “no agenda has been pitched from their side (the Centre)”.

“We can talk about any issue there,” he added.

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