NC, PDP slug it out over UJC chief Salahudin
With polls just days away, Kashmir’s two influential parties — the ruling National Conference (NC) and the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) — are slugging it out over Pakistan-occupied Kashmir-based United Jehad Council (UJC) chief Syed Salahudin.india Updated: Apr 09, 2014 12:18 IST
With polls just days away, Kashmir’s two influential parties — the ruling National Conference (NC) and the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) — are slugging it out over Pakistan-occupied Kashmir-based United Jehad Council (UJC) chief Syed Salahudin.
Senior NC leader and legislator Mustafa Kamal on Monday accused PDP founder Mufti Mohammad Sayeed of secretly supporting Salahudin in the 1987 polls.
“Salahudin, (Hurriyat chairman) Syed Ali Geelani and Jamaat-i-Islami are hand in glove to destroy the NC and for this purpose Sayeed helped them from time to time,” Kamal said.
He also claimed that Mufti used the election symbol of the Muslim United Front (MUF), a conglomerate headed by Jamaat in 1987, for his own party to give an impression that it was an anti-NC party.
Mehbooba fumes over NC leader’s remarks
“The NC has lost the plot and substance to challenge the opposition. Their frustration is understandable with the increasing popularity of the PDP,” said Mehbooba, while addressing a series of roadside meetings in Devsar segment of the Anantanag parliamentary constituency on Tuesday.
“It is mere frustration that they blame us of having alliances with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Jamat-e-Islami and now with Hizbul Mujahideen and Syed Salahudin,” she added.
Salahuddin, whose actual name is Muhammad Yusuf Shah, was a MUF candidate in the 1987 polls and contested from Srinagar’s Batamaloo constituency. He crossed over to Pakistan for arms training after accusing the NC of rigging elections in 1987.
This is for the first time that the UJC chief has become a poll plank, with the PDP accusing the NC of “forcing the youth to pick up guns by shrinking democratic space”. “It is the NC which turned Mohammad Yousuf Shah into Syed Salahudin. After winning by a thumping majority, Shah was declared unsuccessful with utter disregard to the people’s sensibility and choice,” alleged Mehbooba.
Salahuddin has also lashed out at the NC for its utterances and asked people to boycott the polls.
“NC is a power hungry party and for the lust of power its leaders distorted J-K’s Muslim character and sold it to non-Muslims,” Salahuddin’s spokesman Salim Hashmi said in a statement issued from PoK.