In a significant political development, National Conference on Wednesday announced constituency in-charges for 46 out of 47 assembly segments of Kashmir.
According to an order issued by National Conference general secretary Ali Muhammad Sagar, a copy of which is in possession of a local news agency, the party president Farooq Abdullah has approved the appointment of party leaders as “constituency in-charges” for their respective constituencies.
“They shall have regular connect with the public /party workers and office bearers and ensure strengthening of the party at grassroots level,” reads the order.
The announcement of the constituency in-charges clearly indicates that National Conference would not have any alliance with Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), CPI (M) and other constituents of PAGD.
The list also indicates that NC wouldn’t have any poll arrangement with Ghulam Nabi Azad’s Democratic Azad Party, whose leaders were claiming that they would have an electoral arrangement with NC apparently to blunt criticism from Congress and other parties of being BJP’s proxy.
The list indicates that National Conference would field Ali Muhammad Sagar and his son Salman Sagar in assembly polls from Srinagar district.
Ali Muhammad Sagar and his son Salman Sagar has been made constituency in-charges of Khanyar and Hazratbal assembly segments, respectively.
Former MLA Ganderbal Ishfaq Jabbar, who has maintained distance from the party after 5 August 2019, is missing in the list. The party has nominated Ghulam Nabi Rather as constituency in-charge of Ganderbal.
Ishfaq’s father-in-law, Muhammad Sayeed Akhoon, who had contested assembly elections in the past on NC ticket from Hazrtabal, is also not figuring in the list.
In Beerwah assembly segment which was represented by Omar Abdullah in the last assembly of erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir, the party has appointed Muhammad Shafi Bhat as constituency in-charge. Bhat had finished third in 2014 assembly polls from Beerwah.
In north Kashmir, the party has nominated Nasir Aslam Wani as constituency in-charge of Kupwara assembly segment which comprises Kupwara block and Hyhama and Kalaroos blocks of the erstwhile Lolab segment. Sogam, which is native area of Nasir Aslam Wani, is part of Lolab assembly segment. On expected lines, NC has nominated Qaiser Jamsheed Lone as constituency in-charge of Lolab.
Interestingly, the party has nominated its sitting MP Justice (retd.) Hasnain Masoodi as constituency in-charge of Pampore assembly segment.
The lone constituency of Kashmir Valley where the party has not announced name of constituency in-charge is Kokernag seat- the lone assembly seat reserved for scheduled tribes in south Kashmir.