LC Elections: PDP, NC Finalise Candidates

SRINAGAR: As the date for filing nominations papers for Legislative Council elections nears, the unionist political parties are finalizing the names of the candidates who will contest the polls to become members of the Upper House.

PDP and National Conference have finalised names of their candidates to file nominations for LC elections, Congress party will decide tonight as its state president G A Mir has flown to New Delhi to finalise the name of the candidate.

KNS reported that ruling PDP has nominated incumbent MLC Yasir Reshi from Kashmir and Abdul Qayoom Dar from Jammu region.

Reshi is the PDP leader from Bandipora’s Sumbal assembly segment; Dar is a retired police officer and hails from Rajouri.

Dar retired as SP and was district president of PDP in Ramban. At present, he is the head of Auqaf Board of Shardha Shareef shrine in Rajouri.

Sources said that Reshi was again chosen for the seat by the party leadership for his “commitment and work” towards the party and people while Dar has been asked to contest to increase the party’s strength in Pir Panjal range.

PDP’s alliance partner BJP has so far decided to nominate a Kashmiri Pandit for Kashmir seat.

Opposition National Conference is likely to filed Shia leader Aga Syed Mehmood, a prominent NC leader who was a minister in the Farooq Abdullah-led government in 2000.

Sources said that NC has finalised the name and Mehmood will replace Dr Bashir Veeri from Bijbehara in the Upper House.

The state Congress party is likely to decide by tonight as its president G A Mir is presently in New Delhi meeting the party high command, Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi.

Sources in the party said that the workers have suggested to filed a candidate who has not hold any office in the government.

“However, the final decision will be taken by the party high command,” sources said.

As per the Election Commission of India (ECI) schedule, nominations for all six vacancies opened with the issuance of notification on March 22 while candidates can file their papers till March 29. The scrutiny of nominations will be held on March 30 and the candidates can withdraw their nomination papers till April 3. Voting will be held on April 17 and counting will take place the same evening. The entire process will be completed on April 18.

Meanwhile, reports suggest that BJP National general secretary Ram Madhav, who was in Srinagar on Saturday and Sunday and Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti, the PDP president, have reached an agreement to jointly contest three seats each of the Legislative Council.

The PDP and BJP will contest two safe seats each and field candidates on one seat each, which were “unsafe” for the Alliance.

Six seats are falling vacant on April 19 as the members on these seats will retire after two years term. Those members who are retiring include Jehangir Mir, Jugal Kishore of Congress, Dr Bashir Ahmed Veeri, Master Noor Hussain, DS Oberoi (deceased) of National Conference and ruling PDP’s Yasir Reshi.

The seats becoming vacant belong to Kashmir region (three seats), Jammu (two separate) and one seat reserved for Poonch.

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