Sonia to visit Jammu & Kashmir for canvassing Wednesday

December 2nd, 2008 - 6:51 pm ICT by IANS  

Sonia GandhiJammu, Dec 2 (IANS) Congress president Sonia Gandhi is scheduled to visit Jammu and Kashmir Wednesday to address public meetings in Uri in north Kashmir and Doda in Jammu region in support of party candidates. Her speech at these two places is likely to give an indication as to how the Congress party proposes to deal with terrorism, as the issue has climbed back to the top of the political agenda in wake of the terror attack in Mumbai that left 183 dead and nearly 300 others wounded.

Congress General Secretary Rahul Gandhi, during his visit to the state last Friday, had asserted his party was not soft on terrorism but termed the fight against terrorism as important as the fight against poverty. “There has to be a simultaneous fight against the two,” he said.

Sonia Gandhi, who has been visiting Jammu and Kashmir on a regular basis since March 1998 when 26 Hindus were massacred in remote and hilly pockets of Udhampur, now part of the newly created Reasi district, always voiced determination in fighting terrorism.

During her campaign for the party in 2002 Assembly elections when the Congress confronted the ruling National Conference, she had vowed to restore peace in the state and rid it of terrorism.

However, this time around, her party was in power, heading the government until July this year, and she will have to defend its record.

Her speech at Uri, a town bordering Pakistan occupied Kashmir, will be significant especially as accusing fingers are being pointed at Pakistan after last week’s terror attacks in Mumbai.

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