‘People conducted a surgical strike on PDP’
Kulgam: Former chief minister and National Conference (NC) vice president Omar Abdullah said on Wednesday that the minuscule voting percentage in Anantnag and Bijbehara should be a lesson for every politician in Kashmir.
“It should be a lesson that the people are not going to be with us if we do not work for the upliftment of the general public and of the state,” Omar told reporters here in Kulgam town after addressing a party workers’ convention.
Omar was referring to the dismal voting percentage of two and three percent in Bijbehara and Anantnag, in that order, in the first phase of Lok Sabha elections for Anantnag seat held on Tuesday.
He expressed concern over the low voter turnout and at the fact that not even 1,000 votes were polled at the place where Mehbooba Mufti won the last assembly election by a margin of 12,000 votes.
“Not only New Delhi but the PDP as well should ponder over this and the injustice they have meted out to people in the last four and a half years,” he said.
The workers’ convention of NC held today was the first political activity in poll-bound Kulgam, where voting will take place in the next phase on April 29. The last phase of polling will be conducted in Pulwama and Shopian districts on May 4.
Omar claimed that his party’s candidate for Anantnag seat, Justice Hasnain Masoodi, was winning the seat, given the trend of voting in Anantnag.
Asked whether it was a surgical strike by the National Conference on PDP, Omar said that it was a surgical strike on PDP by the people of Anantnag and Bijbehara.
“It at all it was anything it was a surgical strike by the people on PDP. We wanted the people to come out and vote but it was not so,” he said.
Omar appealed to people to come out in large numbers and express their anger through their votes.
“I have not, in my lifetime, seen such anger and despair in the people of Kashmir. I think the only solution will be to choose the right candidate,” Omar said, adding that his party’s candidate will not need any permission to speak about the plight of the people in Kashmir.
He said that the past representatives of the region have either represented New Delhi or talked in Parliament only after getting prior permission from New Delhi.
“Hasnain Masoodi will not need any permission. He will represent the people of Kashmir at the highest level,” Omar said.