NEW DELHI- A war of words has broken out between the BJP and the People’s Alliance for Gupkar Declaration member the PDP over campaigning for the ongoing elections for District Development Council (DDC) in Union territory of Jammu and Kashmir.
The PDP has alleged that its supremo Mehbooba Mufti has been put under undeclared house arrest and is not being allowed to campaign.
On the other hand, the BJP has accused Mehbooba Mufti of not moving out of her house due to the anger of the people against her. Instead of speaking the truth, she is making lame excuses, said the BJP.
The DDC elections, which started on November 20, are being held in eight phases. Five phases are already over. The last phase of polling is on December 19. Counting of votes would take place on December 22.
The elections are significant as the state is going to the polls for the first time after Article 370 was nullified.
Talking to times of india, PDP head of communications Suhail Bukhari said, “Mehbooba Mufti has been put under undeclared house detention on multiple occasions. Besides her, several candidates of the People’s Alliance could not campaign freely as their movement was restricted in the name of security. On the other hand, the BJP leaders are having a field day.”
Journalist-turned-politician Bukhari, who himself has contested the DDC elections from Sangrama in Baramullah district, said Mehbooba has been stopped from stepping out of her house at least three times in the last few days in the name of security.
He said, “A couple of days ago, she wished to visit Budgam to meet the people who were being evicted in the name of removing encroachment of forest land. These people have been living there for ages. However, the administration did not allow her to meet these hapless people.”
However, the BJP says the PDP was making false allegations.
BJP spokesperson Shahnawaz Hussain, who has been camping in the Kashmir Valley for the past two-three weeks, said there was anger among the local people in the Kashmir Valley against Mehbooba Mufti. “She herself is not meeting the people to avoid their outburst. Instead, she is falsely accusing the administration of stopping her from campaigning,” he said.
Hussain, who is the BJP’s in-charge for the DDC election in the Valley, said the administration was also not allowing her to go out due to security concerns as there was anger against her among the people.
“I have also been stopped by the administration on several occasions but I never cried foul. My public meeting in Chowki Bal was shifted three times by the local administration due to security concerns. My Budgam visit was cancelled by them,” he said.
He said, “Wo jaana nahin chahti, bahana chahti hain… Janata se aankh nahin mile, bahana banati hain (She does not want to go out but makes excuses. She makes excuses so that she does not face the public),” he said.(TOI)