By Shafat Mir
Shangus/Anantnag: Congress chief and nominee for the Anantnag seat GA Mir on Saturday questioned the timing of the visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to the state in the run up to the by polls.
Addressing a poll rally in south Kashmir’s Kutihar, Shangus, Mir said the ruling PDP was using state machinery to ensure win in the polls.
“The upcoming visit of PM Modi is part of this plan to turn the tide in PDP’s favour,” said Mir.
Modi is reportedly visiting the state on April 2 to inaugurate the 9-km-long tunnel between Chenani and Nashri on the strategic Jammu-Srinagar highway.
In another joint NC-Congress rally at Khanabal housing colony, Mir reiterated that the elections had been “forced on them” as the situation was not conducive for holding polls in the backdrop of the 2016 anti-India uprising.
“These elections were forced by the PDP and BJP on all of us but as mainstream parties we can’t say no to this democratic process,” Mir told the gathering.
“My choice as a candidate for the upcoming elections was entirely not my party’s decision. It was Omar Abdullah who set a pre-condition that they will fight for this seat in alliance with Congress only if GA Mir is fielded against PDP’s candidate. It was Omar sahab who personally recommended my name with the top leadership of Congress, even when there were many competent people in both the parties for this purpose, given my track record of working with people on ground,” he added.
Appealing to the people to keep ideologies aside, Mir said now was the time to defeat communal forces.
“This is your opportunity to defeat fascism. You have to ensure the thumping victory for Congress and NC candidates. Our victory amounts to victory of secular and unifying force. The unholy alliance between PDP-BJP for the sake of power disturbed the socio-political scenario in the state triggering insecurity among people,” he said.
Claiming the coming together of NC and Congress as a necessary step to counter communal forces, NC leader and MLC Bashir Ahmed Veeri said, “The top leadership of NC took the decision of jointly fighting the by-polls given the current political scenario in the valley.”
“PDP will give much hype to the boycott call but they have prepared a plan to use it for their own good. Our workers too have to stay aware of these designs and plan accordingly so as to make the win of our joint candidate a reality,” Veeri said.
By Shafat Mir