Efforts on to forge pro-Jammu political outfit before 2019 elections

Encouraged by a huge turnout at the Dogra Swabhiman Rally organised by former Forest Minister Choudhary Lal Singh on May 20, attempts are being made to bring all pro-Jammu leaders on a common platform. This is being done to forge a new regional political outfit before the Lok Sabha elections so as to provide people an alternative to the mainstream parties.
Separate meetings of Lal Singh and Congress leader Sham Lal Sharma with Vikramaditya Singh, the scion of the Dogra dynasty, have fuelled rumours about the formation of a new regional outfit.
Sources said Lal Singh met Vikramaditya Singh on Friday while Sharma met him on Saturday to discuss the prevailing political situation in the state in general and the Jammu region in particular.
“As the local leadership of the BJP and Congress is facing a credibility crisis, Lal Singh and Sharma during their meeting discussed prospects of forming a regional outfit for Jammu before the Lok Sabha elections.” a source told Kashmir Post, adding, “after visiting border areas of Samba, Vikramaditya Singh straight went to the house of Lal Singh to compliment him for organising the rally at Hiranagar on May 20.”
For the past year, Jammu-based leaders from different parties are exploring possibilities of forming a Jammu-based regional outfit because people have lost faith in the Congress and BJP.
Although Lal Singh has not quit the BJP, he has already started aggressive campaign to “restore dignity and honour” of the ethnic Dogra minority. From April 13 this year when he was forced to resign for the Council of Ministers for supporting the demand for a CBI probe into infamous Rasana murder and rape case, Lal Singh is seizing every opportunity to project himself as a Dogra leader.
“Response received by Lal Singh during his campaign has encouraged other leaders who have mooted the idea of forming a regional outfit by involving leaders from different parties,” said the source privy to the meetings.
Vikramaditya Singh, who had quit the PDP on October 22, 2017, on the issue of “anti-Jammu policies of PDP-BJP coalition,” is also working assiduously to unite all pro-Jammu forces to address the long-pending demands of the region.
Another pro-Jammu voice and stalwart of the Congress Sham Lal Sharma had resigned from the post of senior vice-president of the Pradesh Congress Committee on May 21, charging the party leadership with ignoring the region.