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Farooq's win from Srinagar LS seat is a sign of Omar to be next CM
4/17/2019 10:50:33 PM

On one seat the Lok Sabha constituency in Srinagar the National Conference feels that the victory of its candidate, Dr Farooq Abdullah, is round the corner. Kashmir valley's heartland constituency of Srinagar, veteran politician and incumbent Farooq Abdullah faces a competition from novice politicians. The campaigning in Srinagar, which has markedly been shadowed by Abdullah's high-pitch statements against the BJP and his aggressive defence of the state's special status, will end on Tuesday and the election will be held on Thursday when the second phase of the ongoing Lok Sabha election is scheduled. Srinagar city, a bustling urban heartland of 1.2 million people and one of the two capital cities of the Jammu and Kashmir state, is one of the three districts that make up the constituency along with the adjoining central Kashmir districts of Ganderbal and Budgam. The parliamentary constituency of Srinagar is a prized seat where voters have diminished over the past elections and the chances of another low voter-turnout are highly likely.
The contest in Srinagar slants in favour of Abdullah, whose family, including his mother Akbar Jehan, his son Omar Abdullah and he himself, has won seven out of 13 parliamentary elections from Srinagar. The track record of the constituency suggests that the National Conference, the oldest political party of the state which was carved out of Muslim Conference in 1939 by Shiekh Mohammad Abdullah, is a front-runner having represented Srinagar in 10 out of last 12 Lok Sabhas. In the previous Lok Sabha election in 2014, Tariq Hameed Karra of PDP had emerged giant-player by routing Abdullah from his bastion. But the years of anti-incumbency against the PDP dented the party as evident from Karra's resignation from the Lok Sabha and also from the party that saw Abdullah winning the 2017 by-poll.
For the 17th Lok Sabha, the contest will be between Abdullah, a three time Chief Minister and also a three-time Lok Sabha member, and 11 other candidates who are political novices. Aga Syed Mohsin, who had joined the NC in 2014 and later switched to the PDP in 2017, is the candidate of Mehbooba Mufti's party which has struggled with defection after its coalition government with the BJP collapsed last year. Irfan Ansari, a candidate of Sajad Lone's Peoples Conference, is making a debut in politics. Mohsin and Ansari, both members of influential Shia families, are likely to divide each other's vote share as Shia voters in parts of Budgam and Srinagar strictly vote on sectarian lines. Sheikh Khalid Jehangir is the candidate of the BJP, the party which has little support structure in Kashmir valley. But the success of Dr Farooq Abdullah depends on the polling percentage. There again the separatists may given a call to people to boycott the elections and whether the voters listen to the separatists or to Farooq Abdullah. This way his son his destined to be the Chief Minister.
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