17 Jammu and Kashmir leaders go back to Congresstext_fields
New Delhi: Seventeen former leaders of the Democratic Azad Party (DAP) have returned to Congress. Ex-deputy chief minister Tara Chand and ex-PCC chief Peerzada Mohammad Sayeed are among them. AICC general secretary K C Venugopal welcomed the leaders.
Tara Chand said they quit Congress because they got carried away by emotions and friendship and quit the party in haste. "We were not comfortable in DAP as we have spent 50 years of our life in Congress and realised our mistake." Peerzada said there is a need to strengthen and unite all secular forces in Jammu and Kashmir. He added that terrorism has increased in the region over the last eight years.
Venugopal said they were on a "leave of two months" and added that it is a happy day for Congress as they were returning back 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 movement in the country and that is why all these leaders have decided to come back to the Congress fold."
"This is only the beginning and when the Yatra enters 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 added.
Speaking about DAP chief Ghulam Nabi Azad, the Congress leader said he has denied talks of Azad returning to the party. He further said the party has invited all like-minded parties to join the yatra and those who believe in the Congress ideology are welcome to join the Bharat Jodo Yatra. Farooq Abdullah, Omar Abdullah, and Mehbooba Sayeed will join the Yatra and walk with Rahul Gandhi in Srinagar.
"A total of 19 leaders were to join today, but 17 were able to come to Delhi and join today. This is the first phase and others will also join soon," said party leader Jairam Ramesh.