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NC's political drama on Leh-Ladakh, Jammu-Poonch Lok Sabha seats
Labha Ram, Hassan Khan likely to spoil party!
3/14/2014 11:26:31 PM
Syed Junaid Hashmi
JAMMU, Mar 14: Despite having got 'electoral alliance' wish fulfilled, National Conference (NC) has not seemingly stopped itself from playing 'political dramas' with Congress.
In Kargil, National Conference (NC) moved no-confidence motion against the Congressman Asgar Ali Karbalaie heading Kargil's Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council (LAHDC). Not only was motion moved but Hassan Khan who is National Conference (NC) councilor in LAHDC Kargil as well as ex-Member Parliament (MP) from Leh-Ladakh Parliamentary constituency told Early Times that there is no alliance with Congress in Kargil. "We have no alliance with them in Kargil, "said Hassan Khan.
He added "Congress was never in majority. It was due to the pressure from the party leadership that we gave Congress a chance to work for people of Kargil. They failed and we decided to part ways," Kacho Ahmed Ali Khan of NC added "We were in majority when the elections to LAHDC took place in August 2013." "But the party decided that Congressman Asgar Ali Karbalie will head it so we supported it. But the Council has victimized us so we were forced to move a no confidence motion against him," said Kacho.
If the claim of NC is to be believed, 11 councilors including eight from NC and three from Islamia School Kargil submitted their no confidence motion to Deputy Commissioner (DC) Kargil who is also the Chief Executive Officer of LAHDC Kargil. Haji Mohammad Haneefa Jan, a councilor who is affiliated with Islamia School said that Deputy Commissioner (DC) should immediately call General Council Meeting of the LAHDC Kargil so that NC and the independents which include a Congress Councilor prove their majority.
He claimed that NC has support of 16 councilors which included eight NC Councilors, three Independents backed by Islamia School, Kargil, four nominated Councilors ( all of these are from NC), Syed Arman (Independent) alongwith two other independent councilors and one Congress councilor. However, Congress leader and Chairman of LAHDC Kargil Asgar Ali Karbalie rebutted these claims and said that there is no threat to the council as Congress has enough numbers to remain in power.
"They are lying. Let them bring no-confidence motion; we would show them how many people are with them. I can tell you with firmness that Congress has remained honest throughout but NC has off and on played mischief. They are not sincere," said Karbalie. However, what makes this development significant is that NC-Congress alliance has given Ladakh to Congress despite the fact that NC man Hassan Khan had won the last Parliamentary elections held in Leh-Ladakh in 2009.
NC has got three Kashmir berths and has already fielded candidates on the three Parliamentary seats. Congress is indecisive on Ladakh. Right now, the Congress is considering two politicians and both are from Leh: Rigzin Spalbar and Tsering Samphel. While Spalbar is heading the LAHDC in Leh, Samphel is district Congress Chief for Leh. This latest development seemingly has backing of NC leadership since Kargil has been demanding its share in the political scenario of Leh-Ladakh.
NC in Kargil has already begun saying that there are two religious institutions and they will set and take a final call while adding that if these two leaders feel satisfied with the candidature of Congress, it is ok, if they do not, we would be left with no option but to field an independent candidate. If the sources are to be believed, National Conference (NC) is likely to allow an independent to contest against the Congress candidate who is likely to be announced on Saturday evening in New Delhi.
Away from this political drama, Refugee leader Rajiv Chunni whose status vis-a-vis membership of the National Conference (NC) remains disputed today nominated Labha Ram Gandhi as candidate of Refugees United Front (RUF) of which he is the president for upcoming Lok Sabha elections. Chunni gave a terse statement, asking refugees who have a substantial vote bank on Jammu-Poonch Parliamentary constituency not to vote for either Congress or National Conference (NC).
Though neither NC leader Iqbal Wani nor Youth President Surinder Singh Bunty could confirm Chunni's resignation from the party but they did say that alliance with Congress has to be adhered to and anyone from our party going against the alliance would not be tolerated. But none could say with certainty that Chunni has resigned from the basic membership of NC. When Chunni was asked, he said "What is the fun of asking this question? If we have fielded a candidate from our front, this is enough to show which side I am with."
He further said that fielding of refugee united front candidate is also an introspection of the displaced community, which has been suffering for the last several decades due to insensitive and step motherly treatment meted out to them by the successive Governments in centre as well as state. He added that no political party, including Congress, BJP and National Conference ever tried to help them sincerely. He repeatedly said that he was no more associated with National Conference (NC).
However, a senior Congress leader said that Chunni should have resigned officially. "He has put up a candidate from Jammu-Poonch constituency seemingly to dent prospects of PDP MLC Yashpal Sharma getting major chunk of refugee votes. However, the planners have failed to realize that if the move backfires, Congress would be major loser in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections," added the leader. He said "If AAP fields a powerful Gujjar candidate coupled with BSP having fielded a Schedule Caste candidate; then much would depend on the refugee vote. In this scenario, Congress is likely to face stiff competition from BJP."
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