Shoaib Lone

In the era of political inertia, it was Sangrama’s former lawmaker Shoaib Lone who created news by dismantling a wall of sub-district hospital Kreeri that hospital officials had raised. The wall closing back door entrance to the hospital that officials said was being used by “some people” to black market hospital supplies was taken seriously by Lone an an inconvenience. He “invaded” the wall with his supporters and demolished it.

Whether it was a source of discomfort to any section of people or not, grapevine suggests it essentially was a turf war between local leaders of ruling Congress and opposition PDP. Lone is the Youth Congress President and suspected the wall was raised at the behest of PDPs Basharat Bukhari.

This was third incident of its kind in which unionist politicians took law into their own hands. Earlier, a district president of Congress and a senior leader of NC from Ganderbal were arrested for assaulting a lawyer and a woman respectively.

Shoiab, son of Dr Ghulam Nabi Lone, was forced to join politics by a vicious campaign by a newspaper. He won hands down against NC in 2002. As education minister at the end of Mufti Sayeed’s term, senior Lone was killed in a militant attack in Tulsibagh on October 18, 2005.

It was later in 2006 that Shoiab riding the sympathy wave defeated PDP’s Javed A Beig and become the youngest lawmaker of the state legislative assembly.
Senior Lone’s assassination had taken place at a time when the dissidence in the PDP was making news. The government then had asked senior IAS officer B B Vyas to probe the killing. But Shoiab said it did not satisfy him.

It was young Lone’s sensational disclosure in the assemly that he paid a sum of Rs 40,000 to a minister to get a case settled.

But his actions did not help Shoaib retain his position as Sangrama lawmaker in 2008 polls.  It was won by Bukhari of PDP. It, however, did help Shoiab create some proximity to the Congress. That eventually fetched him get appointed as Congress youth president in J&K. He was one of the youth who applied for the post (read ‘to Rahul’) and was interviewed and appointed.  

Demolition of the wall is his first major action after bagging the position. Post-demolition, the police reportedly acted on the request of Chief Medical Officer (CMO), Baramulla, Dr Mohammad Shafi Saraf and registered a case. There is no follow up in sight. It is revival of Sanjay Gandhi’s Congress?

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