From a woman who originally came from Muzaffarabad to a former minister, a senior Congress leader and former legislators to the children of senior mainstream political leaders, the DDC elections in Jammu and Kashmir saw a galaxy of candidates trying their luck. Here are some of the big winners and losers in what is the biggest democratic event in the new Union Territory:
Waheed-ur-Rehman Parra: The youth president of PDP, Waheed was contesting from jail. He was picked up by the NIA a few days after he filed the nomination papers. In his absence, Waheed’s family sought votes for him to “prove his innocence”. In Pulwama-I constituency, which polled less than 10 per cent votes, Waheed won after securing 1,332 votes from. The next in line were the rejected votes – at 333.
Taj Mohidin: A former minister and senior Congress leader in Jammu and Kashmir, Taj Mohidin jumped the fray from the border constituency of Parenpillan in Uri, a seat he has represented twice in the erstwhile state Assembly. Mohidin was leading, when reports last came in, by a margin of over 1,500 votes over his nearest rival, Showkat Ali Khan – a joint candidate of the People’s Alliance for Gupkar Declaration (PAGD). While Mohidin had secured 9,730 votes, Khan was at 8,145 votes.
Shuaib Lone: A former legislator who joined the Altaf Bukhari-led Jammu and Kashmir Apni Party, Shuaib lost to Independent candidate Irfan Hafeez Lone from Sangrama constituency of Baramulla by a narrow margin. While Irfan secured 3,404 votes, Shuaib managed to get 2,129 votes. PDP spokesperson Suhail Bukhari, who was also in the fray from Sangrama, managed to get only 325 votes and finished sixth.
Ajaz Mir: A former legislator from Wachi in south Kashmir’s Shopian, the PDP candidate won from Zainapora-II DDC seat, defeating his rival, Independent candidate Basher Ahmad Malla by 637 votes. While Mir polled 932 votes, Malla managed 295.
Safeena Beig: Wife of former deputy Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir Muzaffar Hussain Beig, Safeena contested the DDC polls from Wagoora constituency as an Independent candidate. She was up against NC’s Shaheena Begum, a joint candidate of the People’s Alliance. Safeena defeated Begum by a margin of around 1,500 votes.
While the turnout in most south Kashmir constituencies, especially in Pulwama and Shopian, was low, the region witnessed some close contests.
An independent candidate from Dadsara Tral, Avtar Singh, defeated National Conference’s Ali Mohammad Bhat by a margin of only three votes. In Zainapora-I DDC constituency, Independent candidate Bilquees Jan defeated another Independent, Gull Iqbal, by 11 votes. In Kakapora constituency of Pulwama, BJP’s Minha Lateef won by a margin of 14 votes.
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