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Proxy candidates issue rocks Gupkar Alliance

Sajad Gani Lone (R) along with Imran Reza Ansari (L). File   | Photo Credit: NISSAR AHMAD

Just three months after its formation, J&K's regional amalgam, the Peoples Alliance for Gupkar Declaration (PAGD) that was stitched to fight for the return of pre-August 5, 2019 status, has been rocked by opposition within, with several top leaders pitching against its continuation.

Imran Ansari, a senior Peoples Conference (PC) leader, wrote a letter to his chief Sajad Lone, who is also spokesperson of the Alliance, on Saturday and expressed his reservation over the continuation of the alliance.

“I want you (Lone) to introspect. I am in no way against the stated objectives of the PAGD. But it is difficult to convince the people about the sincerity of intentions when they are themselves witness to deceitful behaviour during the elections. People ask me that if the PAGD leaders cannot be trusted not to cheat each other during the DDC elections how can they trust with the bigger objectives," Mr. Ansari's letter reads.

Mr. Ansari accused the National Conference (NC), whose president Dr. Farooq Abdullah heads the Gupkar alliance, of fielding proxy candidates during the recent District Development Council polls, despite a joint list of candidates drawn by all the constituents of the amalgam.

"In wake of the deceitful behaviour shown by our allies by fielding proxy candidates in almost all DDC constituencies, we need to seriously think whether the PAGD collectively possesses the sincerity that the people of J&K deserve. Collective action will work if there is sincerity. The past two months have shown that there is no sincerity in this alliance," Mr. Ansari said.

Mr. Ansari, a prominent Shia leader, also backed another senior leader of the PC, Abdul Gani Vakil, who of late has publicly opposed continuation of the Alliance. Mr. Vakil expressed his apprehensions publicly and asked Mr. Lone “to introspect whether there is any sincerity in the alliance”.

Two senior leaders of the NC and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) have also questioned the alliance.

NC's Basharat Bukhari asked the top leaders of the Alliance “to share their roadmap with the people”.

“I don't know whether they have a roadmap or if they don't have, it is important to inform people also,” he said, in an interview recently.

PDP leader Fayaz Ahmad Mir, a Member Parliament, also accused the NC of fielding proxy candidates and said the leadership has failed to “act against violators”.

“The decisions taken by the PAGD leadership were not adhered on the ground. All of us nominated proxy candidates. What was the fun of PAGD then? If you boast of unification for the cause, but the leaders, MLAs, MPs don't adhere to the decision. Are they not deceiving people? Aren't we again pushing people to quagmire,” MP Mir, whose Lok Sabha term will come to an end next month, said.

The Gupkar Alliance, an amalgam of six political parties, was given a formal shape on October 15 last year.

“Our motive is to fight for the restoration of the August 04, 2019 position. It's a constitutional battle to assure the return of all the rights which people of J&K, including Ladakh, enjoyed before abrogation of Article 370,” Dr. Abdullah said then.

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Printable version | Oct 17, 2021 4:47:41 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/proxy-candidates-issue-rocks-gupkar-alliance/article33539172.ece

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