The Jammu & Kashmir National Conference is a political party in the state of Jammu and Kashmir, India. Led at the time of Indian Independence in 1947 by Sheikh Abdullah, it dominated electoral politics in the state for many decades. It has been led subsequently by the Sheikh's son Farooq Abdullah and now by his son Omar Abdullah.

History

 The pre-independence period

In October, 1932, Sheikh Abdullah founded the All Jammu and Kashmir Muslim Conference. On June 11, 1939 it was renamed as the All Jammu and Kashmir National Conference. The National Conference was affiliated to the All India States Peoples Conference and in 1947 Sheikh Abdullah was elected president of it. In 1946, the National Conference launched an intensive agitation against the state government. It was directed against the Maharaja. The slogan of the agitation was "Quit Kashmir".

 The post-independence period

In the elections held in September, 1951, National Conference won all 75 seats of the Constituent assembly of Jammu and Kashmir. Sheikh Abdullah remained the prime minister till his arrest on August 9. 1953. In 1953 Sheikh Abdullah was dismissed and Bakshi Ghulam Mohammad became the Prime minister of the state. Sheikh Abdullah again became the chief minisiter in February 1975. In 1977, National Conference led by him won the state assembly elections, and Sheikh Abdullah became the chief minister. His son, Farooq Abdullah succeeded him as the Chief Minister on his death on September 8, 1982. In June, 1983 elections, the JKNC led by Farooq Abdullah again won a comfortable majority. In July, 1984 Farooq's brother-in-law Ghulam Mohammad Shah split the party. Acting on the behest of the central government, the Governor, Jagmohan dismissed Farooq as a Chief Minister and installed Ghulam Mohammad Shah in his place. His government was dismissed in March, 1986 and President's rule was imposed. In 1987 state assembly elections, the JKNC, which formed an alliance with the Congress Party won the majority and Farooq again became the Chief Minister. But he was dismissed again in 1990 by the Union Government led by Vishwanath Pratap Singh and President's rule was imposed in the state. In Jammu and Kashmir state assembly elections in 1996, the National Conference led by Farooq made another political comeback by winning 57 seats out of total 87. But, in 2002 state assembly elections, it won only 28 seats. In December, 2008 state assembly elections no single party was able to get the majority. The JKNC led by Farooq's son Omar Abdullah emerged as a single largest party, winning 28 seats. After the elections, on December 30, 2008 the JKNC formed an alliance with the Congress Party, which won 17 seats. Omar Abdullah became the Chief Minister of this coalition government on January 5, 2009.

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