PDP's Mehbooba Mufti concedes defeat in Anantnag-Rajouri, loses by 2,81,794 votes | Latest News India - Hindustan Times

PDP's Mehbooba Mufti concedes defeat in Anantnag-Rajouri, loses by 2,81,794 votes

Jun 04, 2024 11:02 PM IST

Former CM and PDP leader Mehbooba Mufti accepted defeat against Mian Altaf Ahmad in the Anantnag-Rajouri constituency in Jammu and Kashmir

Mehbooba Mufti, two-time MP and former Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir, conceded defeat in the Anantnag-Rajouri constituency against Mian Altaf Ahmad.

Mehbooba Mufti (HT File)
Mehbooba Mufti (HT File)

As the National Conference's Mian Altaf started leading she issued a statement conceding the election. She fell short by 2,81,794 votes in the polls.

READ MORE: Jammu and Kashmir leaders awaits Lok Sabha elections verdict with bated breath

Candidates Mohamad Saleem Paray from the Democratic Progressive Azad Party (DPAP), founded by former Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad, and Zafar Iqbal Khan Manhas from the Jammu and Kashmir Apni Party (JKAP) were also trailing.

The 2024 general election was Jammu and Kashmir’s first national poll after it was made a union territory following the scrapping of Article 370 on August 5, 2019, and the delimitation exercise completed in May 2022.

The Delimitation Commission had merged Poonch and Rajouri districts of the Jammu region with the Anantnag Lok Sabha seat, which went to polls in the sixth phase on May 25 and recorded a voter turnout of 54 per cent.

READ MORE: Mehbooba skips INDIA bloc meeting in New Delhi

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) stayed away from fielding its candidate from the Anantnag constituency along with Baramulla and Srinagar in the Kashmir Valley.

JKNC vice-president and former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah has accused JKAP, DPAP, People’s Conference, and PDP of being BJP’s “proxies,” according to a Hindustan Times report.

On April 16, 2024, Union Home Minister Amit Shah, while addressing a rally in Jammu region’s Roop Nagar, had asked Kashmiris to vote for whoever they wanted but not the NC, PDP, or Congress.

Despite being part of the INDIA bloc, both PDP and JKNC fielded their candidates from the Anantnag-Rajouri Lok Sabha seat. Similarly, Mufti’s party also contested in Baramulla and Srinagar while extending support to Congress in Udhampur and Jammu Lok Sabha seats.

READ: 2024 Election Results LIVE Updates

PDP president Mehbooba considers the alliance to be a move on an “ideological basis” and to “safeguard the Constitution,” according to a PTI report on May 21.

In 2019, the Anantnag Lok Sabha seat was won by National Conference candidate Hasnain Masoodi, who defeated Mehbooba Mufti and Congress’ Ghulam Ahmed Mir with a vote margin of 5.35%.

Anantnag is considered PDP’s stronghold, and Mehbooba Mufti has won two Lok Sabha elections from here held in 2004 and 2014. Her father, the late Mufti Mohammed Sayeed, had also won it in 1998.

Earlier this year, the Pahari community of Poonch and Rajouri, which forms more than half of the electorate (4 lakh of the total 7.35 lakh) on the Jammu side, was granted scheduled tribe status, which has been opposed by the Gujjar community and may likely have a bearing on the results with JKNC’s Mian Altaf Ahmad being a veteran leader of the Gujjar community.

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