Ghulam Nabi Azad
Ghulam Nabi Azad

17 J-K leaders desert Ghulam Nabi Azad, return to Congress fold

The leaders were welcomed back by the Congress which said they had gone on “leave for two months”.

New Delhi/Srinagar: Seventeen leaders of the newly formed Democratic Azad Party (DAP) in Jammu and Kashmir, including former deputy chief minister Tara Chand and ex-PCC chief Peerzada Mohammad Sayeed, on Friday deserted former Congress veteran Ghulam Nabi Azad and returned to the Congress fold.

The leaders were welcomed back by the Congress which said they had gone on “leave for two months”.

AICC general secretary KC Venugopal said it was a happy day for the party as they were returning to their home ahead of the Bharat Jodo Yatra which will enter Jammu and Kashmir after two weeks.

“The Bharat Jodo Yatra has become a big moment in the country and that is why all these leaders have decided to come back to the Congress fold,” he told reporters in Delhi. “This is only the beginning and when the Yatra is entering Jammu and Kashmir, all people with Congress ideology and who want a united India will join the party. I think, they had gone on leave for two months,” he said.

Asked whether there are any talks with Azad, who is the Chairman of DAP, for his return to the Congress fold, Venugopal said he himself denied any such talks.

On whether Azad has been invited for the Yatra, Venugopal said, “Those who believe in the ideology of Bharat Jodo Yatra are welcome to join the Yatra.”

“We have invited all like-minded parties to join the Yatra,” he said, adding Farooq Abdullah, Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Sayeed will join. ↔ More on P8

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