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PDP asks for indefinite postponement of Anantnag Lok Sabha by-poll

Rattled by a new spiral of violence, the Peoples Democratic Party has asked the Election Commission to indefinitely postpone the Anantnag Lok Sabha by-poll where PDP’s Tassaquq Mufti is one of the seven candidates.

india Updated: Apr 25, 2017 21:47 IST
Toufiq Rashid
Toufiq Rashid
Hindustan Times, Srinagar
Jammu and Kashmir,Lok Sabha by-poll,Anantnag Lok Sabah seat
Girl students shout slogans during a protest rally against the recent police action on students in Srinagar. PDP’s candidate for Anantnag Lok Sabha by-poll has asked the Election Commission to indefinitely defer the election that has once been postponed to May 25. (PTI)

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), one of the two ruling parties in Jammu and Kashmir on Tuesday asked the Election Commission to postpone the Lok Sabha byelection in Anantnag indefinitely in the face of the current unrest in Kashmir valley.

The plea was made by Tassaduq Mufti, the brother of chief minister Mehbooba Mufti and the Peoples Democratic Party candidate in Anantnag during a video conference with the election commission. Tasaduq had said that Kashmir was going through a period of turmoil.

There are seven candidates in the fray but the main contest is expected between Tassaduq and state the satte Congress chief G A Mir.

Tasaduq had made a similar appeal and asked for deferment of the election even before the original scheduled date of April 12. PDP leaders said Tasaduq had told EC to defer polls till the situation becomes conducive. The election was postponed to May 25 tentatively. Election Commission had organised the video conference with all the contesting candidates to ascertain their views about holding of elections to the constituency on May 25.

Read more: MHA, EC call truce, discuss security arrangements for Anantnag bypoll

Kashmir had seen widespread violence during the election to the Srinagar Lok Sabha seat that left eight people dead and scores injured on April 9.

The violence has now spread to schools and colleges as well.

Tassaduq had earlier told reporters that the state government had also formally written to the poll panel that elections couldn’t be held in the current climate.

Separatists have given a boycott call amid simmering anger among the local population after stone pelting and rioting repeatedly disrupted the polling process in Srinagar on April 9 that saw a paltry turnout of 7.14%, the lowest in decades.

First Published: Apr 25, 2017 21:30 IST