Ahead of the forthcoming assembly elections, infighting in Jammu and Kashmir Congress has intensified with the majority of the party leaders, who owe their allegiance to the party stalwart and veteran leader Ghulam Nabi Azad, have submitted mass resignations.

Azad loyalists have resigned from all posts of the Congress party. And, they have submitted their resignations directly to Sonia Gandhi to ignore the incumbent J&K party chief Ghulam Ahmed Mir.

Although mass resignations were submitted to AICC president Sonia Gandhi a week ago, the letter was leaked on Wednesday evening when Ghulam Nabi Azad has started his mass contact programme in his native place of erstwhile Doda district-comprising Doda, Ramban, and Kishtwar districts.

Ghulam Nabi Azad
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Prominent among those, who have resigned, included G M Saroori, Jugal Kishore Sharma, Vikar Rasool, Dr Manohar Lal Sharma, (all former ministers) Ghulam Nabi Monga, Naresh Gupta, Subash Gupta, Amin Bhat, Anwar Bhat, Inayat Ali, and others.

Except for former Deputy Chief Minister Tara Chand, almost all the Azad loyalists in Jammu and Kashmir Pradesh Congress, have submitted their resignations from the party positions.

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Dissidents want Azad to J&K Cong chief

In their letter to Sonia Gandhi, dissidents made it clear that president Congress chief Ghulam Ahmed Mir is not capable to lead the party in coming assembly elections. They suggested the party high-command appoint Azad as party chief to fight elections in J&K.

"Only Ghulam Nabi Azad can take all leaders together and rejuvenate the party", one of the Azad loyalists, who submitted his resignation, told International Business Times.

Wishing anonymity, he said that they have submitted mass resignations to mount pressure on high command because central leadership is not ready to listen to any "genuine" complaint against Ghulam Ahmed Mir.

"We repeatedly sought to apprise the high command about functioning in J&K Congress, but no time was given to us", he said, adding, "We have been requesting for appointment from the party leadership for the last about one year, but no time was given to us. The matter was also brought into the kind notice of Rajni Patil, but sorry to say that no heed was paid."

Rebels already boycotting official functions

Loyalists of Azad are already on the radar of the high command for 'boycotting' official functions for the one and half year years. Rebels have not attended any official function organized by the general secretary incharge of J&K and newly elected Rajya Sabha member Rajni Patil.

Sources said that during his recent visit to Delhi, Pradesh Congress Committee (PCC) chief G A Mir had sought permission from the high command to take action against all Azad loyalists.