Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Sunday held a meeting with a delegation from Jammu and Kashmir's Apni Party led by Altaf Bukhari, at the Ministry of Home Affairs in Delhi. Union Home Secretary AK Bhalla and other senior officials are also present at the meeting which is still underway. Earlier on Saturday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi also met a 24-member delegation from Jammu and Kashmir's Apni Party at his Lok Kalyan Marg residence in Delhi.
PM Modi had assured the recently formed Apni Party delegation that Centre will work towards giving statehood to Jammu and Kashmir at earliest. During the course of the interactive session with the 24-member delegation led by Altaf Bukhari, the Prime Minister had engaged with the delegation on various issues like concerns on demographic changes, delimitation exercise, and grant of state domicile.
A statement from the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) said that in the interactive session Prime Minister Modi called for 'Janbhagidari' in transforming Jammu and Kashmir and emphasised on the importance of an administration that gives voice to the people.
"Prime Minister engaged with the delegation on various issues like concerns on demographic changes, delimitation exercise, and grant of state domicile. Referring to his statement in Parliament, Prime Minister underlined that the Government will work with all sections of the population to realize the hopes of statehood for Jammu and Kashmir at an early opportunity," according to a release by the PMO on Saturday.
The delegation thanked PM Modi for his 'unstinted' support and 'untiring' efforts towards the development of Jammu and Kashmir. They also appreciated the efforts of the government, security agencies and the people of Jammu and Kashmir towards maintaining peace and security in the region.
Bukhari, formerly with the People's Democratic Party (PDP), launched his own party on March 8 named ‘Apni Party’. It consists of senior political leaders, academics, legal luminaries, activists, and like-minded people. Former legislators Vijay Bakaya, Usman Majid, Ghulam Hassan Mir, Javed Beg, Dilawar Mir, Zaffar Manhas, Noor Muhammad, Abdul Rahim Rather, Abdul Majid Paddar, Gagan Bhagat, Manjeet Singh and ten senior leaders of the Congress party quit the grand old party to join the new front. The total strength of the party is 40, including Bukhari.