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news details
NC, PDP fighting for survival
Lok Sabha elections
4/19/2019 12:11:47 AM
Early Times Report

JAMMU, Apr 18: Now, it is crystal clear. The NC, the state's oldest political party (1932), and the PDP, which was floated with much fanfare by Mufti Sayeed and his daughter Mehbooba Mufti in 1999 to provide an alternative to the NC, are not state-level, or even Kashmir-level parties. Both are sub-regional parties and both are struggling even in Kashmir to control its certain parts to remain somewhat relevant. Both have turned sub-regional parties.
On Wednesday, both the parties virtually acknowledged that they had no or little support-base left in Jammu and Ladakh. Both these provinces constitute 89 per cent of the state's land area and house more than 50 per cent of the state's population. The leadership of the NC and the PDP Wednesday declared that they were not fielding their candidates from the lone Ladakh Lok Sabha seat, which last time was won by the BJP with a slender margin of 37 votes. To be more precise, both the parties admitted that the people of Ladakh did not appreciate their ideology and their attitude towards the state's largest province. Ladakh is the largest region in the state.
Earlier, the NC and the PDP had decided to not field their candidates in either of the Jammu's two Lok Sabha constituencies - Jammu-Poonch and Kathua-Udhampur-Doda. The reasons were the same: Both admitted that they had no chance in the Jammu province and, this, notwithstanding their oft-repeated statement that they didn't field their candidates to ensure the victory of the Congress candidates. Jammu is the second largest province after Ladakh province, created only recently by the Jammu & Kashmir Government much against the wishes of the Kashmiri leadership.
The decision of the NC and the PDP to not field their candidates from Ladakh and Jammu constituencies has weakened their position in the eyes of New Delhi in the sense that now the policy-planners would tell the NC and the PDP leadership that it had no moral and political right to speak for the entire state. It has also vindicated the stand of the people of Jammu and Ladakh that they do like their ideology, their attitude towards India and their policy towards them.
But more than that, the NC and the PDP have left none in any doubt that they are at the receiving end even in the small Kashmir Valley. The fact is that both the parties need each other's support in Kashmir to win the Lok Sabha constituencies, especially Srinagar and Anantnag.
It needs to be noted that Mehbooba Mufti didn't even once campaign in Srinagar Lok Sabha constituency from where NC president Farooq Abdullah is seeking re-election and Farooq Abdullah has not campaigned in the Anantnag constituency from where Mehbooba Mufti is seeking people's mandate to enter Lok Sabha.
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