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Fit for polls, fit to be in jail: Omar Abdullah on Pragya

The NC leader hoped that the bail granted to her in a terror case on health grounds would be cancelled

By PTI in Srinagar
  • Published 19.04.19, 7:52 AM
  • Updated 19.04.19, 7:52 AM
  • a min read
National Conference President and Srinagar parliamentary candidate Farooq Abdullah with son Omar after casting their vote at a polling station in Srinagar on Thursday Picture by PTI

National Conference leader Omar Abdullah said on Thursday that if BJP candidate Pragya Singh Thakur was fit to contest an election, she was fit to be in jail too, hoping that the bail granted to her in a terror case on health grounds would be cancelled.

Pragya, who the BJP declared as its candidate for the Bhopal Lok Sabha seat on Wednesday, was granted bail by Bombay High Court in 2017 on health grounds. Her lawyer had submitted that Pragya had cancer. Before that, Pragya, who calls herself a sadhvi and sports saffron robes, had spent over eight years in jail in connection with the 2008 Malegaon blast in which six persons were killed.

Referring to Pragya’s candidature, former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Omar said: “I hope the court that gave her bail cancels it as if she is fit enough to contest (an election), she is fit to be in jail.”

Omar was speaking to reporters after casting his vote, along with father Farooq Abdullah, from the Srinagar parliamentary constituency.

“We are getting to hear new things from the BJP every time. First, they tried to fight elections on (the) Balakot (air strikes) and (the) Pulwama (terror attack). Then, they tried speaking about development and when people did not digest it, they tried the religion card,” Omar said.

“They know that they will not get votes with ‘mandir-masjid’, so they gave the mandate from Bhopal to a person who is an accused in a terror case and is out on bail citing poor health,” he added.

Omar, whose father is the NC candidate for Srinagar, said this election was significantly different from the 2017 bypoll that Farooq had won.

“In that election, we barely managed one or two public meetings outdoors. All our election activity was confined to closed rooms and walled-off areas. In this election, thankfully, we found the electorate far more receptive,” Omar said.