Pahari Leader, Mushtaq Bukhari Quits NC

SRINAGAR: Senior Jammu and Kashmir National Conference leader, Syed Mushtaq Bukhari has resigned from the party. He has said he had issues with the party on the “Pahari cause”.

Pahari leader from Surankote (Poonch) speaking to a public gathering in 2014.

Bukhari has been a strong voice of his community that has been seeking a Scheduled Tribe status for almost three decades.

Reporting appearing in the media said Bukhari was unhappy over his party not supporting his community cause. “So how can we still stay with them,” Bukhari was quoted saying by media. He has claimed to have had a heated argument with Dr Farooq Abdullah over the issue.

The resignation came two days after Bukhari shared the dais with BJP J&K president Ravinder Raina at a conference of Pahari leaders from Rajouri and Poonch on Sunday, where the demand for ST status was made.

Elected twice from Poonch’s Surankote area to the Jammu and Kashmir assembly, Bukhari has been a major Pahari voice. He has been a minister as well. BJP spokesperson Sunil Sethi said Bukhari’s resignation was the fallout of the Pahari community’s growing disillusionment with the National Conference.

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