Opposition delegation likely to leave for Srinagar

Left parties, DMK and RJD attend strategy meeting

August 24, 2019 12:00 am | Updated 12:03 am IST - New Delhi

Kashmiris participate in a protest in Srinagar Indian controlled Kashmir, Friday, Aug. 23, 2019. Authorities intensified patrols Friday in Indian-controlled Kashmir's main city after posters appeared calling for a public march to a United Nations office to protest New Delhi's tightened grip on the disputed region. (AP Photo/ Dar Yasin)

Kashmiris participate in a protest in Srinagar Indian controlled Kashmir, Friday, Aug. 23, 2019. Authorities intensified patrols Friday in Indian-controlled Kashmir's main city after posters appeared calling for a public march to a United Nations office to protest New Delhi's tightened grip on the disputed region. (AP Photo/ Dar Yasin)

A joint Opposition delegation is likely to leave for Srinagar on Saturday, two days after they held a protest rally at Jantar Mantar in the capital to demand the immediate release of political leaders detained in Kashmir.

Former Congress President Rahul Gandhi is expected to be part of the delegation along with senior Congress leader and former Chief Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad. The delegation is expected to include CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury, CPI general secretary D. Raja, DMK’s Tiruchi Siva, Trinamool Congress’ Dinesh Trivedi and RJD’s Manoj Jha. The Nationalist Congress Party, which did not participate in Thursday’s rally is also expected to be part of the delegation.

The August 22 rally was the first Opposition effort to come together against the suspension of Article 370.

Strategy meeting

On August 23 morning, some Opposition leaders met at Mr. Azad’s office in Parliament to discuss their strategy. The meeting was attended by Left parties, the DMK and the RJD.

On August 13, Mr. Gandhi had, on Twitter, told J&K Governor Satyapal Malik: “A delegation of opposition leaders & I will take you up on your gracious invitation to visit J&K and Ladakh. We won’t need an aircraft but please ensure us the freedom to travel & meet the people, mainstream leaders and our soldiers stationed over there.”

The Congress is divided on Article 370 with many discordant voices supporting the government’s move. Those who have publicly supported the government’s stand include Congress General Secretary Jyotiraditya Scindia, former Mumbai Congress Chief Milind Deora and former MP Deepender Hooda.

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