Srinagar (Jammu and Kashmir), Sept 29 (ANI): Senior leader of People’s Democratic Party (PDP) and former minister Altaf Bukhari on Saturday clarified that there was no question of merger of his party and the National Conference (NC) but for formation of a coalition government. Also Read - Srinagar: 8-Month-old Grandchild of COVID-19 Positive Man Falls Victim to Coronavirus

The clarification comes a day after Bukhari opined that the PDP and NC must come together to defend Article 35 A of the Constitution, which, he claimed, was misrepresented. Also Read - ‘Centre Will Take Steps For Overall Development of J-K,’ Amit Shah Assures Apni Party Delegation

“My Yesterday’s remark was in reply to a question about my reaction to the civil society’s suggestion that PDP and National Conference should join hands, form the government and defend article 35A together. There is no question of a merger of parties. It is only about joining hands to form the government,” he told ANI. Also Read - 'Will Work With People to Restore Statehood,' PM Assures Newly Launched Party From Kashmir

“I am not the party’s authorised representative to speak on it. As an inhabitant of the state and as an elected representative, I say it is a welcome step. If the interest of the state can be met by joining hands between the two regional forces, I would definitely use my influence also,” he further noted.

The NC and the PDP have boycotted the upcoming local body elections in Jammu and Kashmir over lack of clarity in the Centre’s stance on Article 35A, which is meant to secure all permanent residents of the State and accord special rights and privileges in public sector jobs, acquisition of property in the state, and other public aid and welfare. (ANI)

This is published unedited from the ANI feed.