Opposition's absence in assembly weakens institution: Omar



Srinagar: Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah on Friday regretted that the opposition decided to stayed away from the proceedings of the assembly, saying this was "weakening" the institution.

"The aim of the legislature is to bring the people's issues on record and debate these issues. It is not necessary that we all agree (on these issues) ... we can at least agree to disagree.

"A legislature where the opposition remains absent gets weakened," he said at an award-giving function by the assembly. Omar said the opposition and the media functioned as checks as balances to bring accountability in the functionining of the government.

"Our job gets easier (by their absence) but we do not want it. We want checks and balances to the functioning of the governemnt, which is done by the opposition and the press,"

Omar said adding a democratic government without any accountability is just like a dictatorial regime. Ruling National Conference MLA Chaudhry Mohammad Ramzan was conferred the best legislator in for the year 2009.

Assembly Speaker Mohammad Akbar Lone announced the awards at the function in the assembly complex here. Ramzan was given a gold medal, a citation and Rs One lakh cash by Omar Abdullah.

PTI