Abdullahs put Sagar on the hot seat

NC rejig |Senior leader takes charge as party’s General Secretary

Srinagar, June 9: Senior National Conference leader Ali Muhammad Sagar Monday finally assumed the charge of party’s General Secretary, replacing ailing Sheikh Nazir with the pledge that “I will pull out my party from difficulties.”

The NC president Dr Farooq Abdullah and Chief Minister Omar Abdullah, who is the party’s working president, directed Sagar to take over as the General Secretary at a function here. All legislators and provincial presidents of Kashmir and Jammu were present on the occasion.
Dr Farooq asked Sagar that NC should be his first priority. “I am Farooq Abdullah because of NC. Many efforts are on to dislodge NC. Many forces are working in this direction, some of them openly and some behind the curtain. There is a strong lobby working hard to damage Kashmir’s identity,” he said.
He said there is disconnect between people and NC at grassroots. “But we need to fill this gap soon if we have to survive,” he said. Recalling political contribution of Sheikh Nazir, Farooq said: “We can never forget Nazir’s contributions. He put his blood and sweat into NC and always remained attached to it.”
The NC president turned emotional soon after stating that Nazir is a “great man who spent his life for NC.”
Nazir, he said, followed Sheikh Muhammad Abdullah’s mission “like a faithful worker.”
Dr Farooq said Sagar has been given full authority to take decisions and nobody will interfere in his work. “Since Assembly elections are nearing, he (Sagar) will continue to be the Minister in the Cabinet,” he said.
Chief Minister Omar Abdullah stated that the decision to give Sagar new responsibility was taken by the party leadership, especially Dr Farooq and all NC workers have accepted it. “We must work as a single unit to strengthen the party ahead of the Assembly polls,” Omar said.
Thanking the party leadership for the new responsibility, Sagar said NC is indeed going through a very difficult phase. “But we have seen the worse,” he said. “In 1990, people ostracized us but we staged a comeback. Many conspiracies were hatched against us, but we fought back bravely. We will overcome hard times.”
He said the party has to unite and those annoyed must back home. “Mistakes do happen. I will stay in touch with the party leadership to address the issues of workers. Every worker would get his due share,” he said.
Pertinently, NC’s core group had recently decided to give party’s command to Sagar.

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