For the first time, the father-son duo of the National Conference, Farooq and Omar Abdullah, will contest the assembly polls together. Farooq will be the CM candidate and the party is likely to contest all 87 seats. “I will hold the position of party chief. It is my responsibility to lead the party to victory. It is a difficult task,” Omar said.
The police cracked down on separatist leaders to thwart them from campaigning against the polls. JKLF chief Mohammad Yasin Malik and Molvi Shoukat Shah and Ghulam Nabi Sumjhi of the hardline faction of the Hurriyat were all picked up. The arrests provoked violent reactions from residents in parts of Srinagar.
PDP decision tomorrow
The PDP will announce its decision to take part in the polls on Saturday. “As a responsible party that stands for the rights of the people, economic, political and social dignity won’t allow divisive and exploitative forces to go unchallenged,” a party source said.