After 38 years, election for state Legislative Council is being held, for the vacant four seats across the valley. In the National Conference dominated area, Ganderbal, 238 Sarpanches were found in long queues to cast their votes on Monday morning.
Haseena, a Panch from Ward 7 of Tulmul- Ganderbal has come to cast her vote for NC-Congress members despite receiving threats to resign. She says, “Stones were thrown on my house a number of times for my resignation and even once my electricity supply line was snapped but I didn’t lose my strength. I am in this field to work for my area and for the ladies of my area.” She adds Omar Abdullah has given us a word that he will help us in getting ‘more benefits’.
Panchs and Sarpanchs in queue, showing enthusiasm want Omar and congress to win the seats of council so that they could get more benefit and work for their areas. And one such Panch included Rafiqa, who was operated on Sunday and on chilly Monday morning she was in queue cast her vote.
Another lady Panch adds that she has come to cast her vote despite a boycott call given by Syed Ali Geelani. “I want to cast my vote so that I can get my salary on time as I have my family dependent on me.”
The elections are for the lying vacant seats, four from the panchayat quota and two from local bodies, of the total 36 seats in the legislative council. The contest is set to be multi-cornered with all political parties fielding their candidates and coalition partners National Conference (NC) and the Congress contesting two seats each.
The opposition parties including Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Panthers Party (PP) who have fielded candidates on all four seats while the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is contesting three seats -two in Jammu region and one in Kashmir valley. The Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) has also fielded three candidates.
More than 33,000 elected Panchs and Sarpanchs will cast their votes for the vacant seats of the Council.