SRINAGAR: In run up to the elusive assembly elections in Jammu and Kashmir, the formal realignment of the political forces has started. On Tuesday, Engineer Rasheed is formally tying up with Dr Shah Feasal, media reports suggest.
The two political parties, with base in north Kashmir, are addressing a joint news conference at 12 noon in Srinagar Press Club.
The two political forces had an informal tie-up with each other and the numbers of the Lok Sabha elections suggested Rasheed performed much better than expected. Rasheed had scored more than 101 thousand votes and led in five segments of north Kashmir and coming runner-up in four. North Kashmir has 16 assembly segments. These numbers offered the two a base on which they are keen to work for the fast approaching assembly elections.
Faesal has told reporters that they have been discussing the idea for some time. Rasheed has also admitted the joining of hands for, “raising the voice of oppressed and talking about the real issues”.
With this tie-up, the north Kashmir will emerge as a major battle ground for the political parties. With NC and PDP already on ground alongwith Sajjad Lone’s Peoples’ Conference, the Rasheed-Feasal tie-up will add a fourth major stake-holder that seemingly is the first choice of the young and the new voter.
Interestingly, the careers of the two north Kashmir politicians share the same time line. In 2008, Rasheed, resigned a job of an engineer and joined politics. By December he was in the assembly. Since then, Rasheed has represented the Langate constituency twice. Dr Shah Feasal became Kashmir’s first IAS topper in May 2009. After holding various positions in the state administration, he finally hanged his boots early this year and joined politics. He is from Lolab. Both have their own parties and it is too early to say if they are having an alliance or a single party.