Jammu: The claims of a united contest in the upcoming District Development Council (DDC) elections by four main political parties of Jammu and Kashmir under the banner of People’s Alliance of Gupkar Declaration (PAGD) seem to be made on papers only as “proxy candidates” are being fielded in several constituencies in many areas of Jammu.
Quoting reliable sources, Kashmir News Observer (KNO) reported that National Conference (NC), People’s Democratic Party (PDP) and Congress have fielded candidates against one another in women-reserved Moughla constituency of Kalakote sub division in Rajouri district.
Pertinently, the PAGD, headed by Farooq Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti, recently announced to contest DDC polls jointly.
However, on the ground, the government officials dealing with DDC polls said that “proxy candidates” of these parties are being fielded as independent candidates.
Citing an example, they said that against an officially announced NC candidate from Mendhar, a senior Congress leader is in competition as an independent whereas in Loran, Bufliyaz, Surankote and other constituencies of Poonch district, “proxy candidates” of PAGD parties against one another are in the fray.
Furthermore, the officials said, the alliance balloons seem to be getting punctured badly in Rajouri district also where NC, Congress and PDP are fielding candidates against each other either in a proxy manner whereas in Moughla, the fight between these parties has become official.
“The last date for submission of nomination forms in Moughla DDC constituency was Monday and a total of six candidates have filed their nomination papers,” officials told KNO.
In the women-reserved seat, two candidates are independent while one is from BJP. But what surprises one is that the other three candidates who are in the poll fray and have filed their nominations include NC’s Shamim Akhter, Congress’ Safina Akhter and PDP’s Razia Sultana — the three constituent parties in an agreement that they’ll work on a seat-sharing arrangement and only one candidate among all will contest in a particular constituency.
“Candidates of PDP, NC and Congress clearly state that PAGD alliance in assistance with Congress is confined on papers only,” these officials said.
They further said that condition is the same in other constituencies as well where PAGD parties are fielding proxy candidates against each other.
Sources said that although Congress has announced that it will fight jointly with the PAGD but in Budhal Old (A) constituency which is known as Peeri constituency, Congress and NC both have fielded their candidates against each other whereas, in Dhangri, PDP has fielded proxy candidate against NC.
Talking to KNO, Congress chief spokesman for J&K Ravinder Sharma said that the party has not endorsed PAGD candidates everywhere and has fielded its own candidates in some constituencies. KNO