Two months were given to buy and intimidate the members, says former Chief Minister
Former Chief Minister and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) president Mehbooba Mufti on Tuesday alleged that manipulating the District Development Council (DDC) results was the “final nail in the coffin of ‘jamhuriyat’ [democracy]”.
A day after the Gupkar alliance had lost the DDC chairman posts in two districts despite the numbers, Ms. Mufti, in a tweet, said, “Disgusting that senior officers in the administration and the police have taken it upon themselves to violate the mandate of the people. By scrapping Article 370, the BJP had already murdered insaniyat [humanity] and Kashmiriyat. Now by manipulating DDC results, they’ve put the final nail in the coffin of jamhuriyat.”
Ms. Mufti said she was “not surprised” by the DDC chairmanship results. “Two months were given to buy and intimidate the DDC members,” she said.
The Gupkar alliance has managed to win only one district in south Kashmir, none in north and central Kashmir so far, despite having the highest 110 winning candidates of 280.
“NC resorting to falsehood”
The Sajad Lone-headed Peoples Conference (PC), which won the chairman post in Kupwara where it had five votes out of 13, accused the National Conference (NC) of resorting to falsehood.
“NC’s Qaiser Jamshed Lone is day dreaming. With four NC members he believes he has the right to get a chairperson elected, while the PC with five members is not supposed to even think about it. What does Mr. Lone want? A chairmanship for his brother. If he doesn’t get it then everything is fixed,” PC leader and former legislator Bashir Ahmad Dar said.
The NC on Monday claimed that the poll for the post was held without their members. However, official sources said the NC members “did not turn up at the stipulated time” to defer the poll.
“We are under orders not to issue statements and I am only reacting to what Mr. Qaiser said. Otherwise, I could tell my people who they had aligned with and how the proposed alliance broke because of differences in who gets what post. If you [the NC] are to raise fingers specifically where you don’t win, your utterances will have no takers even at places which seem unambiguously suspicious,” Mr. Bashir said.