The National Conference leadership is in trouble again. Chief minister Omar Abdullah's close aide and party's provincial president for Kashmir Nasir Aslam Wani was caught on camera kicking a party worker.
The incident according to eyewitnesses took place during a party convention in Central Kashmir's Ganderbal district on Tuesday. "Two factions of party workers raised slogans and were engaged in a duel when he stepped down and started kicking a party worker,'' an eyewitness told Hindustan Times on condition of anonymity.
The convention of workers at the party's district headquarters in Beehama witnessed chaos and confusion as the two groups of workers raised slogans against each other on the issue of mandate from the area. As the convention started, scores of supporters of Sheikh Ishfaq Jabbar stood up and raised slogans against the party asking mandate from the Ganderbal district, which in the current assembly is represented by chief minister Omar Abdullah. However, they were countered by other group of the party workers who raised slogans against Jabbar and urged upon the leaders present there to convince Abdullah to contest from Ganderbal.
The groups tried to clash with each other after which Wani allegedly got down and started beating the worker.
Speaking to Hindustan Times, Wani, however, denied assaulting the worker.
"There was a lot of chaos during the party meeting, I like an elder brother got down to pacify the two groups. In that process, I might have raised my leg, but there was no physical contact. I would never hit anybody," Wani said.
The incident was followed by threats of boycott by Jabbar's supporters.
A similar scene was witnessed during the campaigning for the Lok Sabha elections. In April, minister for higher education Muhammad Akbar Lone slapped a youth while chief minister Omar Abdullah was addressing a rally in North Kashmir's Baramulla district.
The opposition in the valley has also reacted sharply to the present incident.
"We are not surprised. Arrogance is part of the National Conference culture. Even after such a crushing defeat in the Lok Sabha polls, the party seems in no mood to leave its arrogance, it is not humbled," said PDP MP from Srinagar Tariq Hameed Karra.