New Delhi: The ruling party BJP in its manifesto Sankalp Patra has vowed to repeal Article 35A. Claiming it to be discriminatory against non-permanent residents and women of Jammu and Kashmir, the party has moved beyond its commitment to revoke Article 370. This is in contrast to the Congress manifesto, which promises to review the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act and hold unconditional talks with all stakeholders.

"We believe that Article 35A is an obstacle in the development of the state. We will take all steps to ensure a safe and peaceful environment for all residents of the state. We will make all efforts to ensure the safe return of the Kashmiri Pandits and we will provide financial assistance for the resettlement of refugees from West Pakistan, Pakistan-occupied Jammu and Kashmir (POJK) and Chhamb," the Sankalp Patra added.

Political leaders of Jammu and Kashmir, including Farooq Abdullah, Mehbooba Mufti and Omar Abdullah have already said that any such move will bring violence and hostility to the region. Another leader, Mohammad Yousuf Tarigami in Kashmir, warned of “disastrous and unimaginable repercussions”.

Article 35A empowers the state Assembly to define 'permanent residents' for bestowing special rights and privileges to them. It has been a cause of hindrance among the people of Jammu and Kashmir and rest of India.

As per the BJP’s manifesto, the party has pledged to spend Rs 100 trillion on infrastructure in the next five years to help create jobs for the millions entering the workforce each year. Voting in the general election begins from Thursday, but with about 900 million eligible voters, it will be spread across several weeks, with counting slated for May 23.