Srinagar: Mohammad Altaf Rasray, a National Conference loyalist from Chadoora for the past 30 years, divorced the party before the Assembly elections and embraced People’s Democratic Party. His act has earned him four stitches in the head at the hands of an NC loyalist, he said.
On Friday last week, Ghulam Rasool Bhat and his son Bilal Ahmad thrashed Rasray outside his home in Dada Ompora village when he was buying bread from a baker.
If Rasray’s sister had not been accompanying him and come to his rescue, injuries would have been more serious, he said.
“We filed a complaint with the police but no action was taken against the duo because they enjoy the patronage of the former MLA Chrar-e-Sharief (Abdul Rahim Rather),” Rasray said.
Forty-five-year-old Rasray said his joining PDP and persuading several other villagers as well did not go well with NC supporters in the village.
After the attack, Rasray said that newly-elected PDP legislator Ghulam Nabi Lone Hanjoora told him to approach the media to highlight his case.
“For the past five days I have not been sleeping at home. I visit home only during the day. I didn’t receive any benefit for being a devout NC worker and changed my political party,” said Rasray, who is a mason.
The alleged assailant, Bilal Ahmad Bhat, however, said the fight had nothing to do with politics and “Rasray had been provoking me all these days”.
“His brother-in-law blamed me for setting his stack of hay on fire, three days after the election results were out. This led to a scuffle and since then Altaf Rasray holds a grudge against me. Luckily, I didn’t suffer any injury in the recent scuffle but he got injured after falling on the ground,” Bilal said.
When contacted, SHO police station Chadoora Arshid Ahmad said the case is being investigated. He refused to provide any information about the case.
Sub-divisional police officer Char-e-Sharief Ashiq Hussain Tak said the aggrieved party shall contact him and he would look into their complaint.
According to the MLA-elect Hanjoora, the police were “hesitating” to act against the duo who he said were close associates of the former MLA.
“I don’t know why police is hesitating to register case against the duo. It is a political issue as NC workers are feeling frustrated after the recent defeat of their MLA,” Hanjoora told Kashmir Reader.
Asked why he advised Rasray to highlight the case through media, he denied it saying, “I didn’t ask them to go to the press. They must have done it on their own.”
Rather could not be contacted for comment despite repeated attempts.