Srinagar, Sep 16: National Conference (NC) and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) the two largest regional mainstream political parties in Jammu & Kashmir have termed the announcement of poll schedule for panchayat and municipal elections in the state as “arrogance of power” and threatened action against proxy candidates if any one dares to join the electoral fray with the claim of owing allegiance to either of the two parties.
Meanwhile, the Congress party though expressed its dismay over the unilateral decision of government but said that it will hold a meeting on Monday to take a decision on participation in elections.
National Conference Provincial President Nasir Aslam Wani, as quoted saying by news agency Kashmir News Service (KNS), said: “The decision to announce the poll schedule shows the arrogance of power and now we would like to see the relevance of these elections boycotted by two largest mainstream political parties in the state. We won’t allow anyone to contest the elections in the name of our party and the moment any National Conference worker joins the electoral fray we will take action against him/her. We will see how these elections can be conducted amid boycott by two largest regional political parties.”
Reacting to the announcement of poll schedule for panchayats and municipalities, the PDP Chief Spokesman Rafi Ahmad Mir told KNS that “announcement of poll schedule for panchayats and municipalities is a unilateral decision taken without the consent of the mainstream political parties. We had demanded an all-party meeting and had the Governor Satya Pal Malik taken the party meeting and said what he said on article 35 A on Saturday the situation would have been different. After army, paramilitaries and police the mainstream political parties were the biggest weapon with the central government but today the Central Government has demolished mainstream politics in Jammu & Kashmir.”
Saying the question of accepting proxy candidates does not arise at all, the PDP Chief Spokesman said “We won’t allow any party worker to contest the election against any one daring to join the electoral fray. We will see how the elections are conducted without the participation of two largest mainstream political parties in the state. Though we will not launch any anti-poll campaign like the separatist do but will and have asked the party cadres and as well as the people to stay away from these elections.”
Responding to the announcement of poll schedule for municipal and panchayat elections in Jammu & Kashmir the State Congress President Ghulam Ahmad Mir said: “We are a national party and will take a meeting on Monday for taking a decision on participation in elections. However we believe that announcement of poll schedule for panchayat and municipal election is a unilateral decision taken in isolation by the government which is against the very spirit of participatory democracy.”