SRINAGAR: Jammu and Kashmir Jamaat-e-Islami (JeI) elected Ghulam Muhammad Bhat as its new Amir (chief) on Saturday during a daylong session at Nowgam.
Bhat has been the Amir of JeI, the largest religio-political organisation in the state, thrice in the past: 1985-88, 1997-2000 and 2000-2003. He is the seventh Amir of the organisation since its founding by Saad ud Din Tarabali in 1946.
Bhat was elected to the post for next three-years by the representatives of the 16 basic units, which constitute the organisation, during elections held at the party headquarters in Srinagar. Bhat bagged 61 out of 125 votes while the former JeI chief Mohammad Abdullah Wani got 42 votes.
The JeI has 3677 basic members (Arakeen-e-Jamaat) and Umeedwar-e-Rukniyat (aspiring members). They form the 16 units, which in turn choose the Amir after being informed about the qualities of the candidates for the post.
The Amirs who have headed the organisation since its inception include Hakeem Ghulam Nabi, Ghulam Muhammad Bhat, Nazir Ahmad Kashaani, Sheikh Muhammad Hassan and Muhammad Abdullah Wani.
Bhat is a resident of Latishat area of Sopore town and joned the organization in 1960’s. He resigned from government services and joined became a permanent member of Jamaat. He received his early education from his native village and later completed his BA, B.Ed from Kashmir University. During the meeting, 33 members for the executive council were also appointed for the next three-years.